Wuhan Coronavirus Hits the US: What Preppers Need to Know

Wuhan Coronavirus Hits the US: What Preppers Need to Know by Cat Ellis for The Organic Prepper

(Jan. 22, 2020) The CDC has confirmed the first case of 2019 novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in the US. The patient is a man in his 30swho had recently traveled through the Wuhan region in China to Snohomish County, Washington State, north of Seattle.

And, according to the CDC, this won’t be the last case.

Coronaviruses can produce severe, sometimes fatal respiratory illness. The 2019-nCoV appears to be a fast-moving, highly contagious virus. So far, there are 6 confirmed deaths out of approximately 300 confirmed cases.

This is a developing threat, and one that we need to keep an eye on. I expect information regarding this virus to change and be updated frequently on sites such as the CDC, WHO, and CIDRAP.

Here is what we know right now.

What Is a coronavirus?

A coronavirus is a relatively common type of virus among mammals. In spite of how common they are, relatively few of them make humans ill. When they do make us sick, however, it can be serious. Deadly serious.

The term “coronavirus” comes from its appearance. The virus is covered in spikes, giving it a crown-like appearance. The spikes look like a halo or corona. Both SARS and MERS are coronaviruses that have proven fatal. There’s an ongoing outbreak of MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) in Saudi Arabia which has killed 858 people globally since 2012.

Coronaviruses are enveloped RNA viruses. Because they are enveloped, they have greater protection. RNA viruses mutate more frequently than DNA viruses. So, what we have here is a virus that is well-protected from our immune system and that has a greater likelihood of mutation. Both of these pose challenges to developing treatments.

How does a coronavirus make you sick?

Coronaviruses produce respiratory symptoms like a cold or flu. Symptoms include coughing, fever, congestion, headaches, body aches, and a sore throat. Coronaviruses can, however, develop into viral pneumonia.

For people in at-risk populations, such as the very young or very old, or who also have a pre-existing condition, such as diabetes or heart disease, the risk of dying from pneumonia is very real.

What is 2019-nCoV?

The Wuhan Coronavirus, officially known as 2019-nCoV, is a coronavirus first identified from a patient in Wuhan, China. The novel (new) coronavirus was first noted in mid-December. The illness has been linked to a market. According to Cidrap:

Today, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that Wuhan authorities told visiting Hong Kong health officials that three members of the same household were among the 41 cases. They include a father, his son, and a cousin who ran a seafood stall at the market at the center of the investigation and got sick at the same time, suggesting that they may have been exposed to the same source. The market also sold live animals such as poultry, bats, and marmots, along with wildlife parts.

Since coronaviruses are spread by mammals, it is unlikely that the family because infected from their own seafood stand. It is more likely that they were infected by live animals from a nearby vendor.

How is the Wuhan Coronavirus spread?

The big threat is person-to-person transmission. Early reportsstated it was transmitted animal-to-person. But it wasn’t long before the worst was confirmed.

The wife of the man who owned the seafood stand got sick. She hadn’t been to the market and could only have caught it from her husband. Soon, more person-to-person cases began popping up, including healthcare workers caring for infected patients.

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