Background on Coronavirus COVID-19

On 31 December 2019, the World Health Organization (WHO) was alerted to several cases of pneumonia in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China. On 7 January identified the new virus as a coronavirus, which is a family of viruses that include the common cold, and viruses such as SARS and MERS. This new virus was temporarily named “2019-Ncov.”

On 30 January the WHO declared the Novel Coronavirus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern and on the same day South Africa activated its Emergency Operations Centre (EOC).

WHO has been working with Chinese authorities and global experts to learn more about the virus, how it affects the people who are sick with it, how they can be treated, and what countries can do to respond.

The situation around the COVID-19 is still evolving. You will be updated as new information becomes available.

The attached communication toolkit serves to educate and create awareness on the emerging coronavirus.