What is Covid-19 and What is Gymfinity doing to slow the spread of it?
At Gymfinity we take the health and safety of all of our clients and staff very seriously. Here are the FACTS and what we all can do to stay healthy!
What is Covid-19 – the illness that started in Wuhan, China?
Covid- 19 is caused by a member of the coronavirus family. The current strain has never been encountered before. Like other coronaviruses, it has come from animals. Many of those initially infected either worked or frequently shopped in the Huanan seafood wholesale market in the center of the Chinese city.
What are the symptoms this coronavirus causes?
The virus can cause pneumonia. Those who have fallen ill are reported to suffer coughs, fever and breathing difficulties. In severe cases there can be organ failure. As this is viral pneumonia, antibiotics are of no use. The antiviral drugs we have against flu will not work. Recovery depends on the strength of the immune system. Most of those who have died were already in poor health.
Is the virus being transmitted from one person to another?
China’s national health commission has confirmed human-to-human transmission, and there have been such transmissions elsewhere.
How many people have been affected?
As of March 4th, the outbreak has affected 94,250 people globally. In mainland China there have been 2,663 deaths among 77,658 cases, mostly in the central province of Hubei. More than 12,000 people affected in China have already recovered.
The coronavirus has spread to at least 30 other countries. The most badly affected include Japan, with 850 cases, including 691 from a cruise ship docked in Yokohama, and four deaths. Italy has recorded 229 cases and seven deaths, while South Korea has recorded 893 cases and eight deaths. There have also been deaths in Hong Kong, Taiwan, France, Iran and the Philippines. (numbers are from February 25th report)
Including the cruise evacuees, the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the U.S. is now 128, including the 18 from the Diamond Princess.
Why is this worse than normal influenza, and how worried are the experts?
We don’t yet know how dangerous the new coronavirus is, and we won’t know until more data comes in. The mortality rate is around 3.4% in the epicenter of the outbreak, Hubei province, and less than that elsewhere. For comparison, seasonal flu typically has a mortality rate below 1% and is thought to cause about 400,000 deaths each year globally. Sars had a death rate of more than 10%. Scientists believe that the mortality rate of Covid-19 is likely LESS than 2% in that some people may have contracted Covid-19 and have such mild symptoms (and recover reasonably fast) that they do not seek medical treatment and therefore are not part of the statistics.
A crucial difference is that unlike flu, there is no vaccine yet for the new coronavirus, which means it is more difficult for vulnerable members of the population – elderly people or those with existing respiratory or immune problems – to protect themselves. Hand-washing and avoiding other people if you feel unwell are important. One sensible step is to get the flu vaccine, which will reduce the burden on health services if the outbreak turns into a wider epidemic.
Is the outbreak a pandemic and should we panic?
No. A pandemic, in WHO (World Health Organization) terms, is “the worldwide spread of a disease”. The spread of the virus outside China is worrying but not an unexpected development. The WHO has declared the outbreak to be a public health emergency of international concern. The key issues are how transmissible this new coronavirus is between people, and what proportion become severely ill and end up in hospital. Often viruses that spread easily tend to have a milder impact. Generally, the coronavirus appears to be hitting older people hardest.
What can we do to prevent the spread of Covid-19 (or any other Virus)?
According to the Center for Disease Control There are steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting sick from viral respiratory infections, and help prevent transmitting infections to others, including:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Do this Before and After Gymnastics Class.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- If you are sick- STAY HOME. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
- Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces.
What is Gymfinity doing to keep everyone healthy?
- Instructors wash their hands before and after each class.
- Common areas are cleaned and disinfected regularly (including handles, doors, counters, etc). Gymfinity has a cleaning service for the lobby and common areas. These areas are cleaned every day.
- Equipment in the gym is cleaned and disinfected regularly. We have a secret weapon and his name is Nathan. Nathan has been with Gymfinity for over 13 years and comes in 4 days a week to clean and sanitize mats and surface areas in then gym. He is very detail oriented (and we love him for it).
- We utilize a chemical cleaning compound called Zone Defense that wipes out 99.9% of all the items on the Haz-Mat scale. This treatment is safe to humans as it is released overnight, and completely harmless by morning.
- Our staff is instructed to STAY HOME if they (or someone in their family) is ill. You may notice some substitute teachers, this may be the reason.