What You Need to Know About Coronavirus in the State of Texas – Map of Every Case in Texas

Health authorities are closely watching an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a new strain of coronavirus known as COVID-19. Here are the answers to key questions about the outbreak:

What is the virus?

Scientists have identified the virus as a novel, or new, coronavirus. The name comes from the Latin word for crowns or halos, which coronaviruses resemble under a microscope. The coronavirus family has many strains that affect people. Some cause the common cold, while some originating in bats, camels and other animals have evolved into more severe illnesses such as SARS — severe acute respiratory syndrome — or MERS — Middle East respiratory syndrome.

Where did it come from?

The first cases of COVID-19 appeared in Wuhan, in central China’s Hubei province. Many of the first people infected had visited or worked at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan, which has since been closed for an investigation. Chinese health officials say they think the illness first spread from animals to people.

How widespread is it?

More than 81.2 million cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed around the world, according to Johns Hopkins University. The vast majority of the early cases were in China — where the rate of new cases has slowed drastically — and Brazil, India and the United States have since become hotspots. In the United States, which now has the biggest reported outbreak of any nation by far, more than 19.2 million cases have been confirmed.

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Source: Dallas Morning News