Covid-19: what’s the latest on the mysterious Coronavirus?

Covid-19, a newly reported variant of the coronavirus, was found in patients in the Dominican Republic who had been infected in Saudi Arabia, where five people have died. But why does the country appear to be particularly vulnerable?

How did this virus spread?

Health officials believe a close contact with an infected patient in Saudi Arabia enabled a person to transfer the virus to their blood or respiratory system and infect several family members in the Dominican Republic. Among those infected were siblings and parents.

What are the most common symptoms?

Delivering babies, touching a patient with compromised immune systems, being admitted to hospital, being treated for fevers and a cough, or a sudden onset of rashes.

How are the Caribbean islands affected?

The Caribbean has been ravaged by the virus. So far, at least 52 cases have been reported across the region. The Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Guadeloupe and the Turks and Caicos Islands have all seen cases.

Is there anything that can be done to prevent the virus?

The virus is not airborne and there is no new research indicating an airborne route of transmission.

What is the health department doing?

To keep the affected area, Guanahacabibes, safe. As a precautionary measure, the area is being quarantined. People are also being advised not to go to work, and to get good sanitation and avoid hugging and kissing.

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