The novel coronavirus, originally identified in 2019, continues to grow as an international fear. Precautionary travel measures are in place and response systems are activated across the globe. While uncertainty does remain, the rate of knowledge growth for this event is surpassing that experienced during SARS and other recent outbreaks. Check this page for up-to-date commentary from the NCDP team, other Columbia faculty, and the CDC’s own micro-site embedded below.
- Disaster Preparedness Official: Don’t Panic Over Coronavirus Yet, But Be Aware | 2/28/2020 Interview on WCBS 880
- Coronavirus In The Tri-State Area: How Prepared Are We Really? | 2/27/2020 on CBS New York
- Coronavirus Update: CDC Goes Dark As California Reports First Possible Case Of Community Spread | 2/27/2020 in Gothamist
- Syrian refugees are experiencing their worst crisis to date. Coronavirus will make it worse. | 2/27/2020 Op-Ed by Irwin Redlener and Sean Hansen in the Washington Post
- Trump, seeking to tamp down fears of coronavirus, names Pence to lead response | 2/26/2020 in Los Angeles Times
- The Terrifying Reality of Trump’s Coronavirus Promise | 2/25/2020 in the Daily Beast
- What coronavirus teaches us for preventing the next big bio threat | 2/24/2020 Op-Ed by Ellen Carlin and Jeff Schlegelmilch in The Hill
- Our Experts Answer the Coronavirus Questions You’re Afraid to Ask | 2/20/20 in The Daily Beast
- Pentagon to extend availability of 4 military bases to help with coronavirus efforts: official | 2/15/2020 in Fox New (Video interview)
- China’s Coronavirus App Is Alerting Citizens When They’re in Danger of Being Infected | 2/12/2020 in Mental Floss
- Coronavirus Cruise Ship Fiasco Points to Possible ‘Super-Spreader’| 2/11/2020 in Yahoo News
- China launches coronavirus tracking app as death toll surpasses 1,000 | 2/11/2020 in ABC News
- How much should we worry about the new coronavirus? | 2/7/2020 Op-Ed by Irwin Redlener in The Hill
- US declares emergency over coronavirus, announces temporary travel ban | 2/3/2020 in ABC News
- Experts: Family doctors should prep for possible coronavirus cases
1/30/2020 in Bucks County Courier Times
- U.S., China Beef Escalates as CDC Chases Coronavirus Vaccine | 1/28/2020 in the Daily Beast
- US declares public health emergency over coronavirus, announces temporary travel ban | 1/21/2020 in ABC News
From the Director
By Irwin Redlener
Coronavirus has killed more than 2,000 people. All but six of them were in mainland China. The virus, officially called COVID-19, has infected more than 75,000 people. There are more than a thousand cases outside China.
Singapore’s Ministry of Health today reported three new cases of the COVID-10, bringing the nationwide total to 84 confirmed cases. The arrival this week of 14 infected American evacuees from a cruise ship in Japan brought the total number of cases in the United States to at least 29 people.
What You Should Know
- At the moment, there is no evidence of rapidly growing cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. -or any country other than China
- But if you have traveled in the past 60 days (overly cautious!) to China or have been in contact with someone with proven or suspected COVID-19, your health care provider and local public health officials should be informed.
- No special precautions for COVID-19 are necessary, other than what experts recommend as good practices to limit spread of any virus, such as regular, thorough hand washing and “cough and sneeze hygiene”.
- If you have severe “cold symptoms” with a fever, check in with your health provider; you could have the regular flu! (and stay home, if you can…)
- Get the seasonal flu vaccine every year
Challenges Ahead For Public Health And Government Officials
- Still not sure of actual duration of incubation period. Most experts say 14 days – but it could be longer.
- Still trying to prove that people infected with COVID-19 can transmit the virus before symptoms appear
- Vaccine to prevent COVID-19 remains in development; many months remain before being ready for widespread distribution
- So far, there is no specific medication to treat people who are infected with COVID- 19
- Public health scientists are working on more sophisticated and more effective ways to identify, track, test and isolate contacts of people infected with COVID-19
CDC 2019 nCoV Microsite