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Like the SARS-related coronavirus implicated in the 2003 SARS outbreak, SARS-CoV-2 is a member of the subgenus Sarbecovirus (beta-CoV lineage B). Its RNA sequence is approximately 30,000 bases in length, relatively long for a coronavirus. SARS-CoV-2 is unique among known betacoronaviruses in its incorporation of a polybasic site cleaved by furin, a characteristic known to increase pathogenicity and transmissibility in other viruses. (Full article...)
As is common with infections, there is a delay between the moment a person first becomes infected and the appearance of the first symptoms. The median delay for COVID-19 is four to five days. Most symptomatic people experience symptoms within two to seven days after exposure, and almost all will experience at least one symptom within 12 days. (Full article...)
Transmission of COVID-19 is the passing from person to person of coronavirusdisease2019. The virus is transmitted mainly through the respiratory route after an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, talks or breathes. A new infection occurs when virus-containing particles exhaled by an infected person, either respiratory droplets or aerosols, get into the mouth, nose, or eyes of other people who are in close contact with the infected person. During human-to-human transmission, an average 1000 infectious SARS-CoV-2 virions are thought to initiate a new infection. (Full article...)
^Location: Countries, territories, and international conveyances where cases were diagnosed. The nationality of the infected and the origin of infection may vary. For some countries, cases are split into respective territories and noted accordingly.
^Cases: This number shows the cumulative number of confirmed human cases reported to date. The actual number of infections and cases is likely to be higher than reported. Reporting criteria and testing capacity vary between locations.
^Deaths: Reporting criteria vary between locations.
^Recoveries: May not correspond to actual current figures and not all recoveries may be reported. Reporting criteria vary between locations and some countries do not report recoveries.
^The worldwide totals for cases, deaths and recoveries are taken from the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center. They are not sums of the figures for the listed countries and territories.
Not all states or overseas territories report recovery data.
Cases include clinically diagnosed cases as per CDC guidelines.
Recoveries and deaths include probable deaths and people released from quarantine as per CDC guidelines.
Figures from the United States Department of Defense are only released on a branch-by branch basis since April 2020, without distinction between domestic and foreign deployment, and cases may be reported to local health authorities.
Cases for the USS Theodore Roosevelt, currently docked at Guam, are reported separate from national figures but included in the Navy's totals.
From 29 July to 24 November 2020, the Ministry of Health did not publish the total number of positive cases. Instead, symptomatic coronavirus cases were shown as "patients". The ministry began to report the daily numbers of previously unreported cases on 25 November, announced the total number of cases in the country on 10 December, and started to include asymptomatic and mildly symptomatic cases (who are usually considered recovered after 10 days of isolation) in the number of recoveries on 12 December.
The Chilean Ministry of Health considered all cases as "recovered" after 14 days since the initial symptoms of the virus, regardless of the health situation of the infected or if succeeding tests indicate the continuing presence of the virus. The only exceptions are casualties, which are not included as recovered.
Deaths include only cases with positive PCR tests and catalogued as a "COVID-19 related death" by the Civil Registry and Identification Service. This number is indicated in the daily reports of the Ministry of Health. A report with the total number of deaths, including suspected cases without PCR test, is released at least weekly since 20 June 2020. In the latest report (22 March 2021), the total number of deaths is 29,813.
On 17 July 2020, Quebec, Canada, revised its criteria on recoveries. The Institut national de santé publique claims that "the previous method resulted in 'significant underestimations' of recovered cases." This change resulted in a drop of active cases nationwide, from a total of 27,603 on 16 July to 4,058 on 17 July.
The British cruise ship Diamond Princess was in Japanese waters, and the Japanese administration was asked to manage its quarantine, with the passengers having not entered Japan. Therefore, this case is included in neither the Japanese nor British official counts. The World Health Organization classifies the cases as being located "on an international conveyance".
As of 23 March 2020, according to figures from just over 40 per cent of all GPs in Norway, 20,200 patients have been registered with the "corona code" R991. The figure includes both cases where the patient has been diagnosed with coronavirus infection through testing, and where the GP has used the "corona code" after assessing the patient's symptoms against the criteria by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
As of 24 March 2020, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health estimates that between 7,120 and 23,140 Norwegians are infected with the coronavirus.
The number of recoveries is an estimate based on reported cases which were reported at least two weeks ago and there is no other monitoring data on the course of the disease. The exact number of recoveries is not known, as only a small proportion of patients have been hospitalised.
2,399 people who tested positive have been voluntarily repatriated to their respective countries and are not part of the confirmed case count as a result the Government of Botswana does not include the transferred-out cases.
Recoveries are presumed. Defined as "An individual testing positive for coronavirus who completes the 14 day self-isolation period from the onset of symptoms who is at home on day 15, or an individual who is discharged from hospital following more severe symptoms."
Figures for Tanzania are "No data" as the country stopped publishing figures on coronavirus cases on 29 April 2020. Figures as of that date were 509 cases, 21 deaths, and 183 recoveries.
A total of 192 countries and territories have had at least one case of COVID-19 so far. Due to the pandemic in Europe, many countries in the Schengen Area have restricted free movement and set up border controls. National reactions have included containment measures such as quarantines and curfews (known as stay-at-home orders, shelter-in-place orders, or lockdowns). The WHO's recommendation on curfews and lockdowns is that they should be short-term measures to reorganise, regroup, rebalance resources, and protect health workers who are exhausted. To achieve a balance between restrictions and normal life, the long-term responses to the pandemic should consist of strict personal hygiene, effective contact tracing, and isolating when ill. (Full article...)
Brazil reports 85,663 new confirmed cases and 2,216 more deaths from COVID-19, surpassing India as the country with the second-highest number of cases in the world, and also bringing Brazil's total cases to 11,363,380. (Bloomberg News)
The COVID-19 pandemic has had far-reaching economic consequences beyond the spread of the disease itself and efforts to quarantine it. As the SARS-CoV-2 virus has spread around the globe, concerns have shifted from supply-side manufacturing issues to decreased business in the services sector. The pandemic caused the largest global recession in history, with more than a third of the global population at the time being placed on lockdown.
OSHA considers healthcare and mortuary workers exposed to known or suspected person with COVID-19 to be at high exposure risk, which increases to very high exposure risk if workers perform aerosol-generating procedures on, or collect or handle specimens from, known or suspected person with COVID-19. Hazard controls appropriate for these workers include engineering controls such as negative pressure ventilation rooms, and personal protective equipment appropriate to the job task. (Full article...)
COVID-19 testing involves analyzing samples to assess the current or past presence of SARS-CoV-2. The two main branches detect either the presence of the virus or of antibodies produced in response to infection. Molecular tests for viral presence through its molecular components are used to diagnose individual cases and to allow public health authorities to trace and contain outbreaks. Antibody tests (serology immunoassays) instead show whether someone once had the disease. They are less useful for diagnosing current infections because antibodies may not develop for weeks after infection. It is used to assess disease prevalence, which aids the estimation of the infection fatality rate. (Full article...)
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