A coronavirus is so tiny that 1,000 of them could be stacked in the thickness of a sheet of paper. It is an invisible threat, and it is making vivid the shortcomings of our health care systems.

The world is a “a playground” for viruses like the novel coronavirus that causes Covid-19, infectious disease experts wrote last week in the New England Journal of Medicine. “We must realize that in our crowded world of 7.8 billion people, a combination of altered human behaviors, environmental changes, and inadequate global public health mechanisms now easily turn obscure animal viruses into existential human threats.”

There is still a chance that the outbreak, which has now spread to six continents, will stall out. China’s willingness to impose draconian, unprecedented quarantines has bought everyone time.

Credit: Trinks’ Images

Read more at STAT…