As of last month, a new outbreak of the coronavirus was confirmed in China, and since more than 830 individuals have been confirmed with contracting the virus, in addition to two confirmed U.S. cases in Washington State and Chicago.
More details surrounding the food market where the coronavirus was assumed to have originated have been released, and the whole situation is getting stranger and stranger.
Since the announcement last month of the outbreak, scientists have been working diligently to trace the location of the first victim, as well as probable cause for the spread of the virus.
Suspicions arose at Wuhan Huanan Wholesale Seafood Market as a potential location for the origin of the virus, because of their wide variety of meats available.
At the time, they were said to carry frozen and freshly cut and portioned crocodile, snakes, giant salamanders, porcupines, and camel.
According to the food market's advertising, consumers could expect:
"Freshly slaughtered, frozen and delivered to your door! Wild Game Animal Husbandry for the Masses."
Since the original investigation, the food market has been shuttered, as security guards wait outside with paper face masks, keeping consumers and passers-by as far from the entrance as possible.
More details have since been released about the food market, including the fact that they not only sold a wide variety of frozen meats, but also live animals for purchase and consumption.
The list of live animals included wolf pups, rats, and porcupines, as well as foxes and peacocks.
It's suggested that the appearance of the coronavirus, which is typically carried in animals, first appeared in the livestock that were available for purchase, and the virus then transferred to humans through more invasive means, like a cut, bite, or meat consumption.
In animals, the virus usually appears as severe, dehydrating diarrhea or an upper respiratory infection. In humans, it also causes upper respiratory infections, as well as flu-like symptoms, and it can range from acting like a bad case of the flu to being lethal.
The virus is easily transferable from human to human by simple contact and germ-sharing, such as drinking out of the same water bottle, or touching a door knob and then the face.
China has quarantined approximately 20 million people in hopes of stopping the spread of the virus. The World Health Organization confirmed the virus does not rise to the level of a "global health emergency."
According to ABC News, China's Wuhan City is in the process of building an emergency hospital, specifically to address the coronavirus outbreak. They plan to have at least 1,000 beds available for patients, and the hospital is expected to be open and operational as early as February 3.
Construction began for a new hospital being built for patients affected by coronavirus in China's Wuhan City. The l… https://t.co/aRcqn3lk3b— ABC News (@ABC News)1579885446.0
Folks on Twitter were not heartened by the news.
@ABC That's a sign of how much they are under reporting the true magnitude of the epidemic— Keoni Everington (@Keoni Everington)1579885475.0
@ABC Is china underreporting this virus infection rates? Also how China able to build a hospital with such a short period of time?— Innocent Quarshie (@Innocent Quarshie)1579885596.0
@ABC They are building this faster then we build furniture. Good for them and great organizing https://t.co/xm9wfLRf35— SD Fin. Literacy Ctr (@SD Fin. Literacy Ctr)1579885789.0
@ABC They should tell people to not congregate as that’s a sure wAy of padding it on to others 🤷♂️— #JOHN (@#JOHN)1579885843.0
@ABC #Nothing #WhatVirus China right now https://t.co/6mZjdP00GM— Jakartu (@Jakartu)1579885831.0
However, not enough is known about the origins of the virus, or how it has been spread, to be able to say how quickly or widely it might spread.