World Health Organization declares global emergency: A review of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19)

Int J Surg. 2020 Apr;76:71-76. doi: 10.1016/j.ijsu.2020.02.034. Epub 2020 Feb 26.

Abstract

An unprecedented outbreak of pneumonia of unknown aetiology in Wuhan City, Hubei province in China emerged in December 2019. A novel coronavirus was identified as the causative agent and was subsequently termed COVID-19 by the World Health Organization (WHO). Considered a relative of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), COVID-19 is caused by a betacoronavirus named SARS-CoV-2 that affects the lower respiratory tract and manifests as pneumonia in humans. Despite rigorous global containment and quarantine efforts, the incidence of COVID-19 continues to rise, with 90,870 laboratory-confirmed cases and over 3,000 deaths worldwide. In response to this global outbreak, we summarise the current state of knowledge surrounding COVID-19.

Keywords: COVID-19; Global health emergency; Novel coronavirus; Viral transmission; Wuhan.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Betacoronavirus*
  • COVID-19
  • China / epidemiology
  • Civil Defense
  • Coronavirus
  • Coronavirus Infections* / epidemiology
  • Coronavirus Infections* / transmission
  • Disease Outbreaks*
  • Global Health*
  • Humans
  • Pandemics*
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia, Viral* / transmission
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome / epidemiology
  • World Health Organization