In keeping with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 19 million Individuals have been contaminated with the flu up to now this season, and 180,000 of them have been hospitalized due to the sickness. The flu virus has already killed approximately 10,000 folks throughout the U.S., together with 68 children, based on the CDC.
The 2019-2020 flu season has been notably dangerous to kids. In mid-December, the CDC reported that six kids had died from the flu. However, the newest CDC statistics present that quantity has climbed to 27 kids. In distinction to this Flu state of affairs within the U.S., the Wuhan coronavirus has contaminated greater than 28,000 folks and killed 565, in keeping with information gathered by the John Hopkins University — although these numbers proceed to rise.
One of many the explanation, why coronavirus is garnering rather more consideration than the flu, has to do with how we course of language — and particularly, medical terminology, Gonsenhauser explains. “We throw across the phrase pandemic — that terrifies folks,” he says, noting the phrase can deliver up the horrible pandemics from historical past, such because of the bubonic plague and smallpox. “However, actually all we imply by that phrase is one thing that’s spreading throughout a big geographic space in a brief period of time. Nevertheless, it doesn’t essentially point out the virulence and deadliness of it. I feel individuals assume it’s just like the film Outbreak.”
Whereas coronaviruses should not new, this specific one (referred to as 2019-nCoV) is. “We’ve seen coronavirus earlier than; however, it is a new model,” Gonsenhauser says. “So any time there’s one thing new individuals robotically go to Ebola and the zombie apocalypse, pondering that it’s untreatable and lethal. That isn’t what we’re seeing. It’s definitely spreading extra quickly than SARS did; nevertheless, it’s no more harmful than different viral strains.”
One issue that could be contributing to the worry surrounding coronavirus is that it shares comparable signs with the flu, resembling fever and cough, making it more durable to inform what the illness the particular person coughing next to you on the prepare has. Additionally, wash your fingers with soap and heat or chilly water for 20 seconds often all through the day and keep away from touching your eyes, nostril, and mouth. Gonsenhauser explains that the first mode of transmission for viruses, just like the flu and coronavirus, is person-to-person and through body fluids, similar to saliva and mucus.