The horror of viruses

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Healthcare workers with masks, treating infected patients who are coughing and spreading that contagious disease to more people as time goes on, gruesome deaths filled with crying family members on the other side of quarantined regions, and the smell of popcorn.

 

That was just the description of a movie scene in theatre, but have you ever wondered if things like these would occur in real life? Well, I have.

 

Every time a flu pandemic reaches headlines, I clench my heart tightly, hoping so this one doesn’t turn out to be like the ones I saw in movies or read in books because I can’t think of anything more horrifying than deathly, contagious viruses. 

 

The last time I felt that way was during the spread of the Ebola virus in 2014, whose average fatality rates were 50 percent, but cases varied from 25 to 90 percent, according to the World Health Organization. It was a devastating scene to see, but it reminded us of the damage a single virus can do, especially when treatment is unfound.

 

With the coronavirus hitting news headlines, my worries begin to gradually increase as the death toll rises and a vaccine is not coming anytime soon. According to the New York Times, as of Jan. 30, “the official count of confirmed cases across China stood at 7711 [and] the death toll in China was 170” and the fifth case of coronavirus in the U.S. has been confirmed recently.

 

WHO reported that, the fatality rate of the virus as of Jan. 29 is two percent, but the organization is still deciding upon the subject of considering this as a global emergency.

 

In the midst of the outbreak, many countries are communicating with the Chinese government to evacuate their citizens out of Wuhan, China, where the outbreak originally began. However, an American citizen, Diana Adama, who is currently residing in Wuhan, told CNN that she doesn’t wish to leave because if she is a carrier, she is “not going to endanger anybody else.” Other countries like Russia are considering closing their borders that line up with China’s boundaries.

 

With the growing risk of such viruses being so potentially harmful, officials firmly advise taking some precautions to prevent the spread of the infection.

 

“Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing,” reported WHO.

 

With the growing panic of the Coronavirus, I only wish for this to not become one of my movie nightmares and to fulfill this wish, it is important to be aware of the virus and to take necessary precautions against it.