Contextualising the coronavirus outbreak: a comparative mapping tool10 February 2020 London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine https://lshtm.ac.uk/themes/custom/lshtm/images/lshtm-logo-black.png
We have been trying to keep up with the novel coronavirus ever since it started grabbing global headlines last month. At the time of writing, there have been 40,484 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus and the death toll stands at 910. Both of these numbers will be out of date by the time you read this.
In isolation, the daily headlines can be difficult to interpret, offering a static snapshot of a moving target. It is hard, for instance, to tell if the situation is getting better or worse, and to what extent control efforts are having any effect.
The site is updated daily based on figures published by the World Health Organization (WHO). While other live trackers developed by Johns Hopkins University and the WHO are updated more frequently, our tool enables users to wind back the clock and view the global situation on any given day of the coronavirus outbreak. It also enables the unfolding situation to be compared with other recent outbreaks, including the epidemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003 (also caused by a coronavirus), the 2009 swine flu pandemic, and the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
Our hope is that this tool will provide more context to the daily headlines and a fresh perspective on key turning points in the disease’s history.
A longer version of this article will be published shortly in The Conversation.
There cannot be any complacency as to the need for global action.
With your help, we can plug critical gaps in the understanding of COVID-19. This will support global response efforts and help to save lives around the world.