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Coronavirus Needs To Be Taken Seriously – Experts

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Coronavirus

Infection control experts said that the threat of novel coronavirus (NcoV) needs to be taken seriously as there is limited information on its transmission and severity.

The deadly Sars-like respiratory infection has been linked to the UAE, with a confirmed case involving a traveller returning to the emirates earlier this month .

Speaking on the sidelines of the Global Hygiene Council (GHC) and Arab Hygiene Council (AHC) Conference on Thursday, experts said that the cause of the NcoV is still under study.

Research is still ongoing to determine, among others, how are people getting infected and how widespread it is.

The experts urged UAE residents to understand the viral infection and take precautions in the form of increased levels of hygiene.

Supported by Dettol’s ‘Mission for Health’, an initiative that actively helps improve health and hygiene standards across the Middle East, conference speakers stressed the guidelines set by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The body released a statement relating to the NcoV situation on May 12, stating that the greatest global concern is on the potential for this new virus to spread.

Furthermore, the WHO said that urgent action is needed including increasing levels of awareness among people, levels of surveillance of the new infection and initiating investigations.

Visiting professor John Oxford, Chairman of the Global Hygiene Council and Professor of Virology at the University of London, UK, said: “Awareness is vital in the health care sector and in homes and public places because the virus is being transmitted in families.”

He said that infection control precautions from the SARS outbreak in 2003 are being applied.

“We know that respiratory infections can be prevented and controlled through hand hygiene and cough etiquette.”

Prof Oxford advised standard infection control precautions in the form of covering one’s nose and mouth with single-use tissues when sneezing and coughing, using the inner elbow rather than the hand if tissue isn’t available, and disposing the tissue immediately after use.

He explained that the NcoV incubation period is about seven days.

“A person will show the symptoms after a week, making it easier to stop the infection by testing everyone who has come in contact with the infected person.

“It [the long incubation period] is an optimistic sign indicating that this outbreak can be controlled by adopting hygiene measures. It is transmitted through close contact,” he said.

Prof Oxford added that research is ongoing to learn about the source. “Indications point towards the bat. However, it is likely to be sheep, goat or camel — animals around here.”

Dr Mohammad Halwani, a member of the Arab Hygiene Council and Infection Control surveyor at the Health Service Council in Saudi Arabia, told Gulf News that people can protect themselves by taking a few precautions.

“If you see someone coughing or sneezing, avoid close contact. Be cautious especially in places of worship, busy supermarkets and other populated public areas. It is equally important to wash your hands or use a hand sanitiser after touching or handling public goods and facilities like supermarket trolleys, door handles, etc,” said Dr Halwani, also an assistant professor in the Faculty of Medicine at Al Baha University, Saudi Arabia.

Stressing on the need for more awareness on the viral infection, he said that people need to know how the virus is transmitted.

“If any one has flu-like symptoms, he or she should consult a doctor for further tests. In general, keep away from someone with a heavy cough, Close contact with infected people can lead to infection.”

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JUST IN: ECOWAS Lifts Sanctions On Mali

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ECOWAS countries
ECOWAS Countries

ECOWAS Countries

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US President, Donald Trump, Wife Test Positive For Covid-19

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Donald Trump and Melania
Donald Trump and Melania

Donald Trump and wife, Melania Trump

President of the United States, Donald Trump, and his wife, Melania Trump have both tested positive for COVID-19.

The President took to his official Twitter handle on Friday to make this announcement.

Trump was last seen in public on Thursday afternoon, returning to the White House after a fundraising trip to New Jersey.

Also Read: What I Told Trump When He Accused Me Of Killing Christians – Buhari

On Thursday, he announced that his aide, Hope Hicks tested positive for the virus which has killed over 1 million people around the world.

He further revealed that he and the first lady had taken the test and waiting for the results before announcing the outcome on Friday.

 

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Mali: N’Daw, Coup Leader Goita Sworn In As President, VP

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President of Mali, N'Daw, coup leader, Goita
President of Mali, N'Daw, coup leader, Goita

President of Mali, N’Daw, coup leader, Goita

Retired Army Colonel, Bah N’Daw has been sworn in on Friday as the interim president of Mali and he is to head a transitional government following last month’s military coup in the country.

The swearing-in ceremony held in the country’s capital city of Bamako, where Colonel Assimi Goita, who led the military junta, was also sworn in as interim vice president.

This administration is to lead the government for a maximum of 18 months before organising national elections.

Also Read: Buhari Attends Virtual ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit Over Mali Crisis

It will be recalled that the country’s military executed a coup last month (August 18) which successfully removed the nation’s president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita from office.

Former President of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, attended the ceremony alongside other members of the ECOWAS mediation team.

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