According to the latest information available from leading world health researchers, the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is believed to have first emerged in the Wuhan province of China in late 2019. A unique strain of a common family of coronaviruses, SARS-CoV-2 has a similar structure to the past global illnesses SARS and MERS. However, this particular strain is novel, meaning that it is new to the human race and nobody has built an immunity to the virus unless they have contracted the disease and recovered. The name SARS-CoV-2 has been shortened in many outlets to “COVID-19”, with the “19” designating the year the virus first appeared in humans, 2019.
As a respiratory illness, the virus particles of COVID-19 will enter into the human respiratory system through a variety of ways, most commonly the eyes, nose, and throat. Once infected, the virus attaches to receptors in the human respiratory system and hijacks healthy cells to replicate. To survive, the virus must find a new host to infect, thus the need for transmission from host to host. To date, scientists believe that there are two primary ways of transmission – person to person, as well as surface or object to person. This highly infectious transmission method has prompted leading health services around the globe to recommend frequent hand washing, sanitation of commonly used surfaces, social distancing avoidance of six feet, and for individuals showing symptoms of illness to remain at home and isolate.
The statistics show that a small percentage of those who are infected by coronavirus become seriously ill due to complications from the disease. Some have even unfortunately passed away due to infection from the disease – especially those who are elderly and have underlying health issues.
Those who do not show symptoms of COVID-19 may still spread the disease unaware as asymptomatic carriers. As a result, it is vital that restaurant owners practice social distancing guidelines, adopt stringent sanitation practices, and help employees and customers avoid unnecessary contact.