Searching for Coronavirus on Google will now take you to a specifically curated page that will also include safety tips as well as additional help and information, apart from the latest news updates on the ongoing global coronavirus outbreak. These tips are curated by the World Health Organization (WHO) and is a part of the Google SOS Alerts. This comes as the WHO declared the ongoing Coronavirus outbreak a global health emergency.
“Today we launched an SOS Alert w/@WHO, to make resources about #coronavirus easily accessible. When people search for related info on @Google, they’ll find the alert atop results page w/ direct access to safety tips, info, resources & Twitter updates from WHO,” said Google (@Google_Comms) on Twitter. Google has also announced a $250,000 direct grant to the Chinese Red Cross to help with the efforts to curb the spread of the virus and with the relief operations. The company also confirmed that they have an ongoing internal campaign inviting Googlers to donate, and so far, http://Google.org and Googlers have raised over $800,000. Google.org is Alphabet Inc.’s philanthropic arm.
According to last reports, as many as 213 people have reportedly died in China and as many as 10,000 cases of Coronavirus infections are being treated. The WHO also confirmed that there have been as many as 98 reported cases in 18 countries globally. And hence the announcement that this is now a global health emergency. “The main reason is not because of what is happening in China, but because of what is happening in other countries. Our greatest concern is the potential for the virus to spread to other countries with weaker health systems, which are ill prepared to deal with it,” said Tedros Adhanom, director general of the WHO, in an official statement. Health officials in Chicago, US, have confirmed the first US case of human-to-human transmission of the Coronavirus. Most countries have urged citizens to refrain from travel to China, and most corporates have also restricted employee travel to China. Russia has closed its 4,300km (2,670-mile) border with China. The first case of Coronavirus has also been confirmed—a student from Kerala who was studying at the Wuhan University is currently in quarantine and being treated for the Coronavirus.