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The Development of COVID-19 Outside of Mainland China and the Threat of a Pandemic.

Is the world already experiencing a pandemic?  Many persons may feel this way because of the geographic reach of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) which has already touched 77 countries on 6 continents with 12,173 cases and 185 deaths reported outside Mainland China so far.

The word, “pandemic”,  may cause panic but in fact there are more reasons to remain calm and take precautions instead of panicking. There is absolutely no need to panic. All the social health practices would not change if the World Health Organization (WHO) declares a pandemic of the COVID-19.  Even with a pandemic, the good thing is that the COVID-19 can be contained over time.  Although not out the woods yet, China has demonstrated that the virus can significantly be controlled with aggressive public health measures.  We can also say the same thing from the Diamond Princess Cruise ship experience and how the transmission was limited due to the health measures aggressively implemented.  It’s really up to every person to do his or her part to help contain the spread of this virus. 

The following are criteria for a pandemic: 

1. The virus spreads very easy from one person to person. 

2.  It causes significant sickness and death. 

3.  It has spread globally.   

The number of cases outside Mainland China are evidently still too small for WHO to declare a pandemic.  However, if the virus is declared a pandemic, it’s likely that life may be less tedious with relaxed restrictions and border protection measures and more focus around the world would be on finding a vaccine and developing treatments for COVID-19.  Here are some ways to take precautions:

1. Avoid traveling to affected countries and going into crowds and on public transportations.

2. Avoid handshakes, hugs and kisses. 

3. Do not borrow pens or use public pens when you travel. 

4. Wash hands frequently for a minimum of 20 seconds. 

5. Avoid social and networking events, conferences and other large gatherings.

6. Cough or sneeze in elbow or in a tissue. 

7. Wear a mask if feeling sick or feel to have poor immune system. 

8. Avoid food sharing especially buffet style.

9. Surely this and more tips with families and friends. 

Research shows that viruses like this one generally run its course, contained or a vaccine developed.  Either way, there’s always some level of impact on economies but this too shall pass.

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