Dr. Daniel Glickman on the Corona Virus (COVID19) - March 5, 2020

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Summary of Hebrew letter sent to students at the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, March 5, 2020:

This is to briefly update you on the novel Corona virus and how it may affect your studies at the Faculty of Medicine.

The novel corona virus 2019, COVID19, was first identified in the Hubei province of China, in December 2019. Although there has been an encouraging reported decrease in new cases in China, a concerning community infectious spread has been reported in South Korea, Italy, and Iran. The Israeli Ministry of Health is hard at work to prevent or at least, contain the spread. House quarantine measure have been put into place for those returning from most countries abroad.

I would like to stress that most people who have fallen ill with the virus, have experienced light symptoms, similar to a cold; only a few (most of whom are elderly, with pre-existing conditions) show severe respiratory distress. The challenge with treating the more seriously ill, is lack of targeted medication. Treatment is symptomatic. Additionally, to date there is no vaccine.

For updates, you may find these sites helpful:

The World Health Organization
https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/situation-reports/

Israeli Ministry of Health
https://www.health.gov.il/Subjects/disease/corona/Pages/default.aspx

The epidemiological scenario is dynamic and the Ministry of Health is on top of things.

We at the Faculty of Medicine closely follow the guidelines, while attempting to maintain an atmosphere of learning as usual. We are aware of some students who have returned from abroad who are healthy, but quarantined at home.

We recommend avoiding travel abroad, as flights may be changed or cancelled, and once back in Israel, two week quarantine may be mandatory.

We also ask that you update us in a timely manner if you are at home so that we can do our best to help you keep on track with your studies. We can be reached by phone, and I can be reached by email.

I hope that with the warmer weather and close watch including actions that have been taken worldwide, we too will see a drop in new cases, as in China.

With warmest wishes for complete health,

Prof. Daniel Glickman
Infectious Diseases Unit, Padeh (Poriya) Medical Center
Vice Dean, Pre-clinical Studies, Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, BIU