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COVID-19 the Enemy That’s Been With Us Since Early 2020


When Did COVID-19 First Begin?

On January 1st of 2020, due to concerns in China of a repeat of the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus or SARS-CoV-1) outbreak from2002–2004, the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan had been close down. Then, on January 5, Chinese public health officials report that the disease is spreading across Wuhan. On January 10, The first laboratory-confirmed case of the SARS-CoV-2 virus outside of China had been reported by the Ministry of Public Health of Thailand.

On January 14, There had been another occurrence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus outside of China, according to the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare. They also found evidence that the virus can be transmitted through a human with humans. Then on January 20, the first case was reported in the U.S. After that COVID cases kept increasing globally, with Coronavirus reports still happening, and deaths because of this virus.

SARS-CoV-2 is the cause of COVID-19. The chance of experiencing more severe COVID-19 illness problems appears to be higher in older adults and those with severe underlying medical illnesses, such as diabetes, heart disease, or lung disease.

What Are Some COVID-19 Symptoms?

Possible symptoms include:

  • fever or chills,
  • loss of taste or smell,
  • sore throat,
  • extreme cough,
  • muscle or body aches,
  • and headaches.

Keep in mind that those are the most common symptoms present in people that have Corona Virus, but are not all symptoms that are present. In some cases, no symptoms are present at all. If feeling sick, getting a COVID-19 test will be good. Emergency Warning signs of COVID include; trouble breathing, pain or feeling pressure on the chest, inability to stay awake, and pale gray-looking skin.

What to Do If You Catch It?

Courtesy of Mecklenburg County (Flickr CC0)

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) states, “If you test positive for COVID-19, isolate yourself from family and friends for at least five days at home. During these first five days, you are probably the most contagious.” However, after five days, the virus can still be spread.

When someone gets COVID, they are highly recommended to not travel and to wear a high-quality mask like a K-95 Mask. It is also suggested to stay inside as much as possible, only go out to get necessities, and inform their job, school, etc.

COVID-19 Vaccine Is Now Available, Including Booster Shots

Vaccination is a safer and more efficient strategy to increase immunity than becoming ill with COVID-19. The coronavirus immunization serves to protect you without requiring you to suffer from a potentially serious sickness or post-COVID problems.

Data from ongoing trials provide indications that getting vaccinated after contracting the virus that causes it can provide further protection. Anyone exposed to the virus may postpone their subsequent dose for three months from the onset of their symptoms or, in the absence of symptoms, from the time they received a positive test result. Both an initial dose and a booster dose are susceptible to this potential delay.

The COVID-19 vaccination works well to prevent people from being extremely unwell; needing to go to the hospital, and even passing away. It was one of the greatest defenses against COVID-19. The CDC advises that everyone aged 6 months and older maintain current with their vaccinations. This includes everyone aged 5 years and older obtaining boosters (if eligible).

Those on immune-suppressing drugs or who have specific medical problems are more likely to develop severe COVID-19 disease and pass away. They may not have as strong of an immunological response to the vaccine as individuals not immunosuppressed. However, the vaccination, including boosters, has particular guidelines for individuals who are moderately or severely immunocompromised.

A reminder that it is still around, and still taking the lives of many. By wearing a mask, social distancing, and staying home if any COVID symptoms are present, this bad disease will continue to decrease and bring things back to normal.

By Adriana Castelan


CDC: COVID-19 Timeline

CDC: Symptoms of COVID-19

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Daniel Foster Flickr Page- Creative Common License

Inset Image Courtesy of Mecklenburg County Flickr Page- Creative Common License


Cathrine Osborne, DM

Infectious Disease Physician

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