What you need to know about COVID-19

There’s been a lot of confusion about the impacts of COVID-19. How it will impact our health, who is most at risk, and indeed whether the media is simply sensationalising the reality. I put my wellness journalist hat on and did some digging to bring you the latest facts gathered from a broad range of international sources including the World Health Organisation (WHO) and some of the world’s leading medical experts.

COVID-19 fast facts (as of 18 March 2020)
  • Queensland researchers are starting a clinical trial of a potential treatment for COVID-19 – using two existing drugs
  • The drugs have proved highly effective when used against the virus in test tubes
  • Around 33% to 75% of us will catch COVID-19 unless a vaccine is developed – Source Dr David A Sinclair
  • There have been no new cases reported in Wuhan since the first outbreak 
  • More than 200,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported to WHO
  • More than 8000 people have lost their lives to COVID-19
  • More than 80,000 people have recovered from the virus
  • More than 80% of all cases are from two regions – the Western Pacific and Europe
  • 166 countries, areas, or territories have COVID-19 cases
  • WHO is recommending that confirmed ‘mild’ cases should be isolated in health facilities
  • As of 6.30 am 19 March there are 565 confirmed cases in Australia. That’s 111 new cases since yesterday morning.
  • Of the 565 confirmed cases in Australia, 46 have recovered and 6 have died from COVID-19.
  • There are more than 7000 confirmed cases in the U.S with a total of 97 deaths
Global COVID-19 cases
Source: World Health Organisation
How is the COVID-19 transmitted?

The exact way it’s transmitted is yet to be determined, but because it’s a respiratory virus WHO advises it is likely being transmitted via respiratory droplets from a contaminated person who coughs or sneezes, or through something contaminated by the virus like a surface area or food. 

Who’s most at risk?
  • Those who have recently been to China, Iran, Italy or Korea
  • Those who have been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19
  • Those with a compromised immunity system
  • Elderly people
  • Indigenous people
  • People with a chronic medical condition
  • People in a group residential setting
  • People in detention facilities
How does it impact me?

It depends which country you live in. Many countries including most of Europe, Asia, New Zealand, Australia, U.S and Canada, and South Africa have closed their borders to non-essential travel. If you are coming home after being overseas you need to self-isolate for 14 days.

Other countries like the U.S, Italy, Spain and France have imposed self-isolation on all their citizens, restricting people’s movements and closing schools, gyms, nightclubs and other venues.

In Australia, the government is resisting imposing a complete ban on people movement instead urging businesses to allow workers to work from home where possible and trusting those infected to self-isolate.

What are the COVID-19 symptoms?

The Australian Government’s Health Department released the below image detailing the symptoms:

Source: Australian Health Department

However, in the first few days you won’t know if you have it. Your symptoms may be confused with a cold. The below image sourced from Dr Peter Attia provides some clarity in symptoms.

Can I do anything to help prevent getting COVID-19?
  • Cough or sneeze into your arm or tissue, and bin the tissue
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water
  • If you’re sick call the doctor
  • Social distancing – stay 1.5 metres away from anyone
  • Self-isolate

Can I improve my immunity system to prevent disease?

It depends who you listen to and which type of medical advice you adhere to. I believe in functional medicine and focusing on keeping my body as healthy as possible to help prevent disease.  I stick to a strong regimen of supplements, healthy plant-based diet, exercise and meditation – the key pillars for longevity – to help prevent/combat illness. Some of the key supplements I use are:

  • Liposomal Vitamin C  – A powerful antioxidant which helps to protect against free radicals. I prefer this form of Vitamin C as it’s highly absorbent and much more effective than normal vitamin C.
  • Vitamin D – helps boost the immune system especially if you’re not getting this essential vitamin naturally. It can help to fight bacteria, and viral infections.
  • Magnesium –  another immunity booster playing a key role in immune response. It is also great for supporting muscles and bones, and a sleep aid.

So that’s the latest. As I’ve said before, our biochemistry is as individual as a fingerprint so what works for me may not work for you, so please ensure you consult your preferred health practitioner before making any changes to your diet. I like to be armed with information which helps me make decisions about my own health, so I hope this has helped you in some small way. If you have any comments, thoughts about the above or any tips you’re currently implementing, I’d love to hear them. Leave your comments below. 

Here are a few links to help you get access to more facts about COVID-19.




Stay safe everyone!

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