What is Covid-19?
COVID-19 is an infectious disease caused by novel coronavirus that is now renamed as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SASR-COV-2). The virus was known as novel coronavirus as it was an incomplete match between the genomes of previously known coronavirus. Measuring 80-120nm in diameter, SARSCOV-2 is a single stranded RNA virus that belongs to the genus beta coronavirus. Due to its 96% recognition rate with the bat SARS coronavirus, SARS CoV-2 is considered to be originated from bats and have other animals as an intermediate hosts before infecting humans. It causes multisystem illness in animals other than respiratory illness. In humans, it causes spectrum of diseases ranging from mild illness to severe respiratory illness. Other subtypes of coronoviruses have also caused similar outbreaks namely the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2002 and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (MERS) in 2012.
On December 31, 2019, COVID-19 was initially reported to WHO as pneumonia from Wuhan city, Hubei province, China. The disease was declared as a global health emergency on January 30, 2020 and a global pandemic on March 11, 2020.
Ethiopia activated its Public Health Emergency Operation Center (PHEOC) for COVID-19 preparedness and response on January 27th 2020 and has been taking different measures for effective preparedness and response. The first COVID-19 confirmed case in the country was reported on 13 March 2020.