Human-to-Human Transmission

The new pneumonia-like coronavirus has now been confirmed by a Chinese government-appointed expert that two cases have been transmitted from one person to another. The two were family members living in the Guangdong province in southern China. One of them visited the animal market in Wuhan where the outbreak began and transferred the virus after returning home. Some medical workers have also tested positive for 2019-nCoV.  This is a bit worrying because the first case in the United States was confirmed in Washington state on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.   

Coronavirus Incubation Period

The incubation period for this new coronavirus can last up to a week. This means it’s possible for an infected person to not show key symptoms such as a cough, difficulty breathing, or fever. That’s why I highly recommend everyone stay diligent with their hygiene. Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds and cover your mouth with your elbow when you cough or sneeze. 

The World Health Organization’s New Recommendations

The WHO has released new recommendations regarding interacting with live animals to reduce the risk of animal-to-human transmission of diseases. They recommend anyone visiting live animal markets or animal product markets practice the following hygiene measures:

  • Avoid animals if they appear sick
  • Avoid eating raw or undercooked animal products
  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose
  • Wash your hands immediately after touching an aminal

They also recommend people avoid touching stray cats, dogs, birds, or any animals that may live at these markets. Also, stay on the lookout for any animal waste or fluid in these areas because it might not just be on the ground. It could be on any part of the market facility. Be careful when handling raw meat and dairy products, and always avoid cross-contamination with food that has not yet been cooked.