Billions of people are currently under lockdown as the Coronavirus continues to dominate the whole world. The deadly virus has already infected more than 1,484,800 people and killed over 88,500 individuals globally.
It should be noted that this week marks 100 days since the World Health Organisation (WHO) received the first report of an unknown disease affecting a huge number of people in China's Wuhan. Since then the world has changed, the situation became worse, the epicentre of the COVID-19 has shifted and all these factors also changed our daily lifestyle.
All of these started as an outbreak in China and within months it turned out as a pandemic. Now, the question is even though the world is fighting against the Novel Coronavirus, do we know everything about it and how far we reached in this battle against the unseen enemy?
What is COVID-19?
It is a respiratory and intestinal disease which is caused by Coronaviruses. As of now, there are seven different types of Coronaviruses have been found including those responsible for SARS and MERS epidemics. As per the researchers, the current pathogen is more contagious than SARS, with one person infecting around three others.
The source of Coronavirus
The Novel Coronavirus or SARS-CoV-2 is the virus which causes COVID-19. Initially, it was reported that the outbreak was started in Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, where live animals are being sold.
The source of this deadly virus is still considered as a debatable idea as researchers have suggested that either bats or pangolins would be the possible source of the COVID-19.
Vaccination and treatment for the Coronavirus
It may be very hard to believe that even though we are living in a technologically advanced era, how it is possible that international scientists have not found a cure for the virus? But it is true that there is no specific treatment or vaccine for coronavirus. Many countries are currently using medications like Hydroxychloroquine, Lopinavir, Interferon beta-1b, Dexamethasone and Remdesivir as experimental drugs to treat Coronavirus patients. But it should be noted that none of these medications is approved as Coronavirus drugs.
However, countries like the US and China currently conducting vaccines trials. While the US is aiming towards a second vaccine human trial, China revealed that it would like to test its own vaccine in other hard-hit countries. Most of the scientists agree that any vaccine or medication will be available by mid-2021.
A previous Coronavirus patient can be infected again?
There are several cases of re-infection from SARS-CoV-2. These people were taken to hospitals after their tests came positive for the first time and after the recovery, they tested positive for COVID-19. But it doesn't necessarily mean that they caught the coronavirus twice.
During the recovery, a patient may have very low amounts of the virus remaining in their body which doesn't show in test results. So while the body fight against the virus, a resurgence of the virus (and symptoms) can occur and then if they take the tests it will come as positive.
However, it should be noted that in most people, the Novel Coronavirus generates a strong response from the immune system. Since it has a fairly low mutation rate, it means that it won't change enough that our immune system no longer remembers it to fight against the virus.
Is the end of Coronavirus pandemic near?
There are several countries including China where COVID-19 cases are dropping but it should not be neglected that the Asian country has been under the threat of witnessing the second wave of Coronavirus due to surge of symptom-free cases. In the US, while the situation started to get worse, experts claimed that it could be the next COVID-19 epicentre. As of now, the US reported over 432,100 infection cases and more than 14,000 deaths, mostly from New York state.
To get on the road to leave behind this pandemic situation needs Coronavirus vaccination and medication which are not ready yet. People can develop immunity through infection but the whole process of developing such immunity takes years.
Who is responsible for this pandemic?
There are several theories on this issue and most of them indicate China's carelessness and secretive attitude as well as lies which boosted the Coronavirus outbreak to become a global crisis. China has been facing criticism for not being transparent about the disease and silencing doctors who first noticed the outbreak in Wuhan. Meanwhile, the US which is struggling to deal with the Coronavirus situation in the country failed to consider initial warnings raised by the intelligence agency and imposed safety measures too late.
While the US and China blaming each other for the current global crisis, President Donald criticized WHO while accusing it of being too focused on China and issuing bad advice during the COVID-19 outbreak. During this blame game, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said now was not the time to assess the global response to the pandemic, calling instead for the international community to focus on working in solidarity to stop the Coronavirus spread.