COVID-19: Not Here Yet, But Still Sparking Fear


MERS virus, Meadle-East Respiratory Syndrome coronovirus, 3D illustration

Caleb Hoyle

The Coronavirus, or COVID-19, is causing great disturbance and fear around the world. Though China is the main source of this virus, it has spread to other countries such as the United States, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Iran, and others. 

The total number of infections is approximately 96,800, and the death toll lies at approximately 3,300, according to The New York Times. Several nations, including Turkey and Pakistan, have banned people from crossing the border from Iran to try to control the spread of the virus. Italy has imposed quarantine restrictions as the country is experiencing a large outbreak with, a total of 3,000 infected and 107 dead.

The United States has seen a smaller number of infected, but there have been over 110 cases of infected people and 11 deaths spreading from China, as of March 5 according to The New York Times. “This new virus represents a tremendous public health threat,” says Dr. Nancy Messonnier of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. 

Messonnier states that there has not been any spread of infection throughout a community within the States. Eleven people were diagnosed from oversea travels and the other 21 were returned to the United States by the state department. Many of the other people infected in the United States were passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship. 

As of now, there are no confirmed cases of Coronavirus in New Mexico, and the nearest state with reports of infection is Arizona with two confirmed cases, and Texas with 12 cases, according to the New Mexico Department of Health. 

The Coronavirus has seen most of its influence within Asia, causing evacuation, death, and despair in China. 

There is no cure yet for the coronavirus, but according to the National Institutes of Health, a vaccine in the making is expected to be ready for clinical trials by the end of April. Clinical trials on humans have commenced at the University of Nebraska Medical Center to test the safety and efficacy of the drug. The first patient to be administered the drug was an evacuee from the Diamond Princess cruise ship.