Coronavirus: main questions

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As coronavirus cases in the UK rise, the Chief Medical Officer for England have raised the risk to the public from low to moderate. 

What is Coronavirus?

It is a virus of the Coronavirus family that has never been encountered in humans before. This virus originated in animals and it has spread to humans with the epicenter identified as Wuhan, in China. 

(2019-nCoV), as it is officially called, affects your lungs and airways and can be spread also from human to human. 

What are the symptoms?

The virus causes pneumonia. Symptoms include coughs, fever and breathing difficulties. It can lead to organ failure. 

Are Antibiotics effective?

No. It is not a bacterial disease but a viralpneumonia. However, antiviral drugs are not working against this flu. Infected people will receive support for their lungs but a full recovery depends on the strength of their immune system. 

What can we do to reduce the risk of transmission? 

First thing, avoid contact with people suffering from respiratory infections. Then, all the basic hygiene rules apply: wash your hands frequently, sneeze in disposal tissues and cover yourself while coughing. Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.

Another important precaution is to avoid direct contact with farm or wild animals.

Dr Sebastian Kalwij, GP Amersham Vale Practice

What to do if feeling ill?

Call 111 immediately or call your GP surgery. Do not go to a GP surgery or hospital. Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people. Tell 111 about any any symptoms you have. They will guide you through the process and will understand if it actually is (2019-nCoV).

Dr Sebastian Kalwij, GP Amersham Vale Practice

Source: World Health Organization / NHS

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