You cannot fight a fire blindfolded. And we cannot stop this pandemic if we don’t know who is infected.
-Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO), 16 March 2020
On 31 December 2019, the World Health Organization was notified about a cluster of pneumonia of unknown origin in the city of Wuhan, China. Chinese authorities later identified a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) as the causative agent of the outbreak. After the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak spread to multiple countries across the globe, including Switzerland, the World Health Organization recognized it as a pandemic on 11 March 2020.
During this international public health emergency, the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Bern provides information and resources about the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic for scientists, public health experts, journalists and the public.
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Abel T. Gesundheitskompetenz und die Corona-Krise. Gesundheitswesen. 2020 Apr;82(4):301-302.
Abel T, McQueen D. The COVID-19 pandemic calls for spatial distancing and social closeness: not for social distancing! Int J Public Health. 2020 Apr;65(3):231.
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Salathé M, Althaus CL, Neher R, Stringhini S, Hodcroft E, Fellay J, et al. COVID-19 epidemic in Switzerland: on the importance of testing, contact tracing and isolation. Swiss Med Wkly. 2020 Mar 19;150:w20225.
Riou J, Althaus CL. Pattern of early human-to-human transmission of Wuhan 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV), December 2019 to January 2020. Euro Surveill. 2020 Jan;25(4).
Several researchers of the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine are members of the Swiss National COVID-19 Science Task Force that assists the authorities in overcoming the COVID-19 crisis: