What You Should Know About Coronavirus

Mar 12, 2020

Microscopic view of coronavirus

By now, you must have heard about this coronavirus going around, or at least something about Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson testing positive for some virus on Wednesday? Some schools and office buildings have shut down. Even companies have asked their employees to work from home. So, what is this virus? You probably have seen variation of the same thing like COVID-19, coronavirus, nCoV, or coronavirus disease 2019, or 2019 novel coronavirus. 

Here are the Official Names for the Disease and the Virus Causing It

  • The disease is called coronavirus disease (COVID-19)
  • The virus that causes the disease is called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)

Viruses, and the diseases they cause, often have different names.  For example, HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.  People often know the name of a disease, such as measles, but not the name of the virus that causes it (rubeola). So, in this case, the virus causing the coronavirus disease or COVID-19 is actually called "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2", or SARS-CoV-2. 

If you're thinking, wait, isn't SARS something else? Well, yes, and no. This name was chosen because the virus is genetically related to the coronavirus responsible for the SARS outbreak of 2003.  While related, the two viruses are different.

Check out WHO if you want to read more about this.

How It Spreads

Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans. 

Person-to-person spread. The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Spread from contact with contaminated objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.


Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

Steps to Prevent Illness

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019. Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include..

  • Regular hand washing
  • Covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing
  • Thoroughly cooking meat and eggs
  • Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Wear a facemask if you are sick
  • Clean and disinfect (most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work)

Our Commitment to You

There is no higher priority at Anita’s than the safety of our clients, employees, and housekeepers. We have been monitoring communication from local authorities, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and government agencies to stay on top of this evolving situation. According to the most recent information from the CDC, for most people, the immediate risk of being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 is thought to be low.

We want you to feel confident when the housekeepers enter your home. So, we are asking you to help us with the following in the interest of everyone’s health and safety.

  • Please alert the office if you have signs of fever, cough, or shortness of breath
  • Please avoid close contact i.e., try to be in a different room during service
  • If you think or know you have COVID-19, please cancel service as soon as possible

For more, visit Symptoms and Steps to Prevent Illness.

Rest assured, we are monitoring this developing situation closely, staying in regular contact with local authorities and health organizations. We will keep you informed and updated as we learn more along the way, and we'll continue to send updates as this situation evolves.

Thank you for your patience and trust in Anita’s Housekeeping Referral Agency. We are prepared to navigate through these challenging circumstances with your safety at the forefront of everything we do.

We look forward to seeing you at home soon

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