The University of Washington has officially announced they will be closing their doors to students and switching to online classes and examinations as the coronavirus outbreak in the Seattle area reaches a threatening level. There have been over 100,000 cases of infection across the globe and an emergency fund of $8.3 billion has been offered by the Trump Administration to help prevent the spread of the virus and to help find a potential cure.
The University of Washington is only the first university to close in the United States and it intends on remaining closed for physical classes until the winter quarter concludes, which should be at the end of March. Other universities have plans to follow in their footsteps to ensure the virus is contained as much as possible. The level of alarm for university students went up when one student returned to Chicago from Italy and was tested positive for the virus. The University of California said three of its students had a risk of having the virus and were self-isolating themselves until their test results could come in.
As the virus continues to spread rapidly across the globe extreme measures are starting to be practiced, especially in countries that were hit harder. South Korea has made it a point to delegate specific specialists to walk around and disinfect the streets with potent sprays in the hopes of reducing the virus from spreading at such a fast pace. The World Health Organization has stated that this is no longer just a drill or a possible reason to panic, but it is a time to take full and complete action against the spread of the virus. There have been 13 deaths in Washington state alone and global death tolls have exceeded 3,200. It appears no one is safe from contamination as everyone, from healthcare workers to politicians, have been affected by the virus.
Unfortunately, there still seems to be a shortage of supply and public labs are awaiting more testing kits in order to determine how severe the crisis really is. In a previous statement, the Vice President stated that any American who wanted to be tested could be tested. However, now the statement has been reversed and a new statement was given to the public revealing that the truth is there are simply not enough tests and resources for everyone to be tested.
China seems to reach a positive milestone in containing the virus
Though there is a lot of scary news regarding the spread of the virus across the globe, progress has been made in Hubei, the Chinese province in which the coronavirus originated. For the first time since the outbreak, there have been no reported infections outside of Wuhan. There are still new cases of infection coming out in Wuhan daily, but the good news is the infections are only in the city and not from outside. This successful containment of the virus is a direct result of the extreme measure the Chinese government has taken over the last few weeks to reduce the spread of the virus.