Posts in tag

Wuhan Coronavirus


The novel coronavirus that has so far killed more than 1,100 people now has a name – COVID-19. The World Health Organisation (WHO) didn’t want the name to refer to a place, animal or certain group of people and needed something pronounceable and related to the disease. “Having a name matters to prevent the use …

The overwhelming sharing of fake news amid coronavirus outbreak across the globe raised concerns among governments, including in the Southeast Asian region. In the past weeks, we have quickly found disinformation and misinformation on social media stirring public discussion and, at times, leading to unnecessary panic. In Malaysia, misinformation claiming that coronavirus would make people …

With a new infectious disease outbreak on our doorstep, we might ask ourselves: are we reacting to the coronavirus in a way that is proportional to the threat? The problem is that when it comes to infectious disease epidemics, we have a strong tendency to overreact emotionally and underreact behaviourally. The overreaction aspect may be …

As Singapore is now seeing a few local cases without any links to previous cases or travel history to China, the Government has stepped up risk assessment from DORSCON Yellow to DORSCON Orange. The Government is prepared for a scenario involving community spread. Existing measures will be strengthened, and additional measures implemented, to minimise the …

The big idea: It’s the enduring media image of infectious disease outbreaks, including the current coronavirus outbreak from Wuhan, China: people in public spaces with faces half-hidden by surgical masks. Filters have long been used to remove particles, including viruses and bacteria, from the air we breathe. Particle filters are key components of building and …

We usually think of viral respiratory infections, like the common cold, as mild nuisances that pass in a few days. But the Wuhan coronavirus has proven to be different. Of those infected, around 2% are reported to have died but the true mortality is unknown. There’s much we’re yet to learn about this new virus, …

One would think that our world, compared to the past centuries where pandemics have killed millions of people is better equipped when it comes to fending off diseases thanks to medical breakthroughs and innovations. Intuitively, we expect less infectious diseases to pop out and spread today. Confusing truth However, we know that this is not …

Public fear seems inevitable given the alarming updates on the coronavirus outbreak, and isolation — in the forms of lockdown and quarantine — has become our default response. As a social scientist in globalization studies, I am interested in the role some of the less visible layers of globalization — such as awareness of our …

As the new coronavirus continues to cross international borders, the two key questions on public health officials’ minds are: ‘How deadly is it?’ and ‘Can it be contained?’. The two outbreaks in recent memory that give the most insight into these questions are the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak, which spread from China to 26 other countries …

The World Health Organization reversed course on Jan. 30 and declared the coronavirus a “Public Health Emergency of International Concern.” The first human-to-human transmission in the U.S. was announced. India has reported its first case. Russia has closed part of its border with China, and more than 9,800 cases have been reported, with 213 deaths …