Coronavirus expands in Illinois, United States

Illinois among the 15 states with reported cases of COVID-19


Alissa Eckert, MS, Dan Higgins, MAM

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Chase Creech, Staff Writer

The third and fourth case of coronavirus in Illinois was confirmed Monday by the CDC. A married couple in their 70’s was infected by the coronavirus, still waiting to be confirmed by the Center for Disease Control (or CDC). 

That same day, two staff members and two students from District 25 in one of the schools from Arlington Heights were sent home due to person-person contact with a medical worker that operated on a coronavirus patient.

Though the name of the virus is called “SARS-CoV-2,” the disease has been called “COVID-19,” which identifies it as coronavirus from 2019. The CDC states, “The SARS-CoV-2 virus is a betacoronavirus, like MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV. All three of these viruses have their origins in bats. Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in people and many different species of animals, including camels, cattle, cats, and bats.” 

People can catch COVID-19 by being within six feet of a person through respiratory droplets that come from coughs and sneezes. Symptoms appear between 2-14 days of exposure. Being self-aware of others and consistently washing your hands reduces the chance of catching this virus.

Coronavirus originates in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. It is believed that the virus came from person-animal contact, as the region’s economic prosperity comes from their live seafood fish market.  

The Trump administration has taken precautions to limit the virus in the U.S. This includes a travel ban to Japan (host the Summer Olympics), Italy, and South Korea. According to CDC, citizens can’t travel to Iran, and foreign nationals that were in China have been suspended for 14 days of entry into the US, when these US citizens are permitted back into America they are going to be subjected to 14 days of American medical evaluation and treatment. The specificity of the coronavirus has resulted in the death of over 3,000 people compared to the SARS virus, which killed 774 victims worldwide. 

The U.S. has reported 128 cases and 9 casualties from the coronavirus so far, and the confirmed deaths have all come from Washington state. Some believe that the coronavirus virus originated from the EvergreenHealth Health Medical Center in Kirkland in King County where the virus could have been spreading for up to six weeks and may have infected between 150 and 1,500 individuals.

The Guardian offers suggestions on how to avoid the virus. “In the UK,” they write, “the medical advice is that if you have recently travelled from areas affected by coronavirus, you should: stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu, call NHS 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the area.”