According to Chinese officials, who are notorious for hiding the actual numbers, six people have died and 291 have been infected in China with a SARS-like virus that originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan.
The number of cases in China surged over the weekend and it’s being reported that healthcare workers are now being affected as well. Fifteen medical workers have tested positive for the virus, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission said.
Anxiety in China and throughout the world has also grown after Chinese government expert Zhong Nanshan confirmed everyone’s worst fears on state television late Monday that the new coronavirus can spread from human to human.
The World Health Organization (WHO) later confirmed these findings. “Information about newly reported infections suggests there may now be sustained human-to-human transmission,” said WHO’s regional director for the western Pacific, Takeshi Kasai.
The coronavirus family includes viruses that cause the common cold, but coronavirus found in bats, camels and other animals have evolved into more severe illnesses like SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, and MERS, the Middle East respiratory syndrome.
“Based on current information, an animal source seems the most likely primary source of this outbreak with limited human-to-human transmission occurring between close contacts,” World Health Organization spokesman Tarik Jasarevic said at a briefing.
#BreakingNews UPDATE: New video from the inside of isolation ward at the hospital in Wuhan, China. The number of confirmed #coronavirus cases in the city is on the rise, the pathogen is now spreading to bigger cities in China. (Video by RFA News) pic.twitter.com/rkT7tesHrm— Max Howroute▫️ (@howroute) January 20, 2020
Concerned over a possible global outbreak similar to the 2002-2003 SARS epidemic, another coronavirus that spread from China to more than a dozen countries, numerous countries have started screening travelers from China, especially those arriving from Wuhan, the central city where experts think the virus originated.
passengers screened for coronavirus symptoms on a domestic flight out of Wuhan pic.twitter.com/ytUbVzpYRZ— David Paulk 波大卫 (@davidpaulk) January 20, 2020
Chinese Virus Infections popping up across the Globe
Throughout the region Infections have been reported in Beijing, the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, South Korea detected, Thailand and Japan in the last week. This morning, Australia and the Philippines reported their first possible cases of the Wuhan Coronavirus.
A five-year-old boy was taken to a hospital in Cebu City, in central Philippines, just hours after he arrived with his mother from Wuhan on Jan 12. He was coughing and had a fever.
A Queensland Health spokesman said a man had recently returned from Central China with a respiratory illness. “Because the man traveled to Wuhan, Coronavirus is one of the conditions he is being tested for,” he said. “The man will remain in isolation until his symptoms have resolved. ISOLATION “We urge anyone who has developed any respiratory symptoms within 14 days of travel to Wuhan to see their GP immediately.”
Chinese Coronavirus Being Reported in the United States
CNN is reporting that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will announce the first US case of the Wuhan coronavirus this afternoon. The case is currently being investigated by the CDC, but it is believed that the SARS-like virus has shown up in Washington State over a week ago.
The CDC knew it last week, and hid it from the American public.
According to NPR:
The first case of an infection with a new coronavirus has been discovered in the U.S. A person traveling from Wuhan, China, to Washington state was diagnosed with pneumonia last week. Subsequent tests showed that the person has the virus, which can cause pneumonia. In severe cases the coronavirus can lead to death. The case was detected prior to the implementation of screening at three U.S. airports last Friday.
It’s currently unclear how it got here or if the person recently traveled to China.
Are you prepared for a Pandemic Disease Outbreak?
The fact is, at some point we are going to have to deal with a worldwide outbreak of a disease that could threaten life as we know it.
Throughout history millions upon millions of people have died as the result of pandemic outbreaks; in fact, almost every recorded civilization has been affected by one of these outbreaks. From smallpox, which killed an estimated 300-500 million people during the 20th century, to things like tuberculosis, the 1918 Flu Pandemic and the Third Pandemic, caused by the Bubonic Plague, which wasn’t fully contained until 1959, pandemics are a very real cause for concern.I’ve been telling people this for over a decade. In fact, it was the basis for why I wrote my book, The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide: Self-Reliance Strategies for a Dangerous World.
Most U.S. Hospitals not Prepared to contain Ebola or any Pandemic Outbreak
As we started reporting back in 2014 during the Worldwide Ebola scare, Hospitals in the United States are not ready to contain any disease outbreak. In fact, they can barely contain pathogens that are already known to this country.
According to the CDC’s own numbers, over 1.7 million people are infected every year by healthcare-associated infections, with 99,000 people a year dying from infections they acquired at a hospital. If U.S. hospitals are unable to stop known pathogens like Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Clostridium difficile (C. diff), and Vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE), there’s no way these same hospitals are going to be able to stop future pandemic outbreaks.
To put it into perspective, every year 14,000 people are infected with Clostridium difficile while staying in U.S. hospitals. Clostridium difficile is a pathogen that’s spread by diarrhea, and is nowhere near as infectious as something like Ebola. If these same hospitals had an outbreak of Ebola, or some other highly infectious disease, does the CDC really believe they can contain it with current medical practices?