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COVID-19, the novel strain of coronavirus which has taken the world by storm, was first reported to the World Health Organization on December 31, 2019. The virus began in the city of Wuhan, China, at a wet market. This is a type of market that sells live meat, fish, and produce. On January 11, 2020, China reported its first death from coronavirus right before it’s biggest holiday, the Lunar New Year. China soon went into lockdown to stop the spread of the disease, but in this internationally minded world, it was too late. By January 21, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and the U.S. had all reported cases of the novel form of coronavirus. The first death outside of China was reported in the Philippines on Feb. 2, France announced the first death in Europe on Feb. 14, and on Feb. 29, in Washington state, the CDC reported the first death in the U.S. as a result of COVID-19. On March 11, the outbreak was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. The U.S. has since become the country with the most confirmed cases of COVID-19, as of April 2nd, 2020.
Michigan has been one of the hardest hit states in the country, and the spread of the virus has impacted the entire University of Michigan community. On March 11, students and staff received the much anticipated notice that the University of Michigan had cancelled in-person classes for the rest of the Winter 2020 semester and had moved classes online. As time has passed, more pieces of the university have gone remote, libraries have closed, labs have ceased operation, many students have returned to their hometowns, and slowly, our once bustling campus has gone quiet.
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On this special edition episode of The Daily Weekly, we are joined by Dr. Abdul El-Sayed to speak about the misconceptions surrounding the novel strain of coronavirus, discuss questions about social distancing, and analyze the political and economic implications of the pandemic. We were also joined by several members of the University of Michigan community to shed light on the many ways COVID-19, and the University’s response to the pandemic, has affected us all.
From all of us at The Daily Weekly, thanks for a great season! We’ll be back in the fall with more great content!
This episode was produced by Audio Engineer Gibson Gillett-Behrens, Executive Producer Sonya Vogel, and Content Producers Rachel Fagan, Doug McClure, and Gerald Sill. Thank you to our guests, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, Dory Fox, Elizabeth Chon, Joshua Sodicoff, and Dr. Elizabeth Berman, for joining us to bring this project together remotely.
Be sure to check out all of the Apocalypse series on your favorite podcast platforms, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Play!