In the latter months of 2019, there were several reported cases of severe lower respiratory tract disease of unknown aetiology in the Wuhan, Hubei province of China. In the first week of 2020, a previously unknown betacoronavirus was isolated by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and prevention (CDC). It is the seventh member of the coronavirus family that can infect human beings. This short review presents the categorization of the virus, the geographic distribution, populations at risk, presentation, transmission, prevention and the readiness of health systems in Africa for this outbreak.
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