What You Need to Know About COVID-19

Panic or fear has never solved a thing in a pandemic. Nothing beats being informed so that you can make sound decisions and take the right actions.

What is a Pandemic?

A pandemic is a situation where a disease outbreak happens in many countries around the world at the same time. COVID-19 is an example of a Pandemic.

Not Today Covid19 Sign On Wooden Stool

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a new strain of coronaviruses that was only discovered in 2019. Coronaviruses are zoonotic microorganisms which means they are passed between animals and humans. This is the first time that this particular strain has infected humans.

What are the signs and symptoms of COVID-19?

The signs that a person has been infected with COVID-19 are very similar to other respiratory illnesses like the common cold, flu and some others. Some of these signs include coughing, sneezing, shortness of breath, fever and breathing difficulties. It is important to note that there are asymptomatic carriers of the infection, which means that they show no symptom but are infectious.

How does it spread?

The virus is carried in droplets released from those infected. Whenever such people cough or sneeze, the droplets are released into the air, their hands or on various surfaces. Anyone who comes in contact with these droplets by breathing in the droplets or touching contaminated surfaces with their hands and then their faces (eyes, nose, and mouth) will also be infected.

Am I at risk for the infection?

As a young and healthy person, you are not at risk of dying or being severely ill from the virus. The people at high risk are the aged, babies, and individuals with underlying health conditions.

How can I protect myself from being infected with the virus?

The preventive measures include the following;

1. Handwashing

This should be done with soap and water as directed in the illustration. The process should last for at least 20 seconds, the same amount of time it takes to hum the ‘happy birthday song’ twice. What you do after washing your hands is also important. Do not use your clean hands to turn the tap off or hold bathroom doorknob.  Also, make sure to dry your hands properly. If soap and water are unavailable, hand sanitizer with an alcohol content of at least 60% should be used. 

2. Social Distancing

change, different, exceptional

Remember that the virus is transferred through droplets from infected persons? Keeping a distance from people reduces the risk of getting the virus.

It is encouraged to avoid public places if possible and when in public places, avoid physical contact and maintain at least 3 meters distance from other individuals.

Also, stay away from people with symptoms of respiratory illnesses.  

3. Cough or sneeze properly

Do not go around coughing/sneezing into the air or your hands. Cough/sneeze into a disposable paper or your elbow (imitating a dab motion) as this reduces the risk of spread.

What should I do if I think I have the virus?

Two People Being Isolated

Self-isolation is the first thing to do. This means staying away from people to avoid infecting them. Go ahead to call your national healthcare provider to get tested. You can check the internet for the number to call as this varies from country to country.

Stay current with information concerning this situation and make sure to get it from the right sources. Avoid passing across unverified information as misinformation might kill more people than the virus itself. 

Stay healthy. 


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