Live with Corona Virus-Why You Should Be Ready?
We all have now realized that we have to live with corona virus, till an approved vaccine or medicine is available. It’s been almost 6 months from 30 January 2020 when the first case of novel coronavirus was detected in a student of Kerala’s Thrissur district after his return from Wuhan University in China. And by 3 February, the number of cases rose to 3. And since then, this figure has been increasing incessantly. (see the latest Corona updates here). Although the mortality rates for India at 3.2 percent is lower compared to the UK, US or other European countries.
However, if the government has rolled back restrictions imposed to control the disease, does it mean that the disease has been vanquished? No.
There are certain reasons for lifting lockdown (with a few prohibitions), including economic fallout, no decline in cases despite lockdown, a sudden rise in unemployment, lockdown is not killing the disease, depression in people due to layoffs, lesser pay (somewhat 40-50% of total salary in many organizations) or being furloughed. The other reason for unlocking is that people have also got tired of the panic mode and now prepared themselves to live with the virus.
How COVID-19 Pandemic will End? – Historians’ Opinion
According to Historians pandemics mainly have two kinds of endings: first is medical, which happens when there comes a decline in the death rates, and the second is social- when the widespread fear about the virus wanes.
And they believe that the COVID-19 could end socially before it ends medically. It is because more and more people are now fed up with staying homes and want to return to their regular life.
However, the coronavirus continues to spread in a suppressed way in the population unless the effective treatment or vaccine is found to eliminate it. So, again it is essential that people should prepare themselves to live with the virus. And that can only be achieved if people follow proper preventive measures like social distancing, hand-washing, wearing face coverings to protect themselves from the disease and avoid the spread of the virus.
A recent study suggests that the virus settles on any surface for a few hours to up to some days. And this depends on the type of surface, humidity and temperature of the environment. So, avoid close contact with other people, maintain at least 1 meter or 3 feet distance from other people and wash your hands often.
Indian Immunity, Climate and Government App are No Silver Bullet
Initially, when Coronavirus rampaged China, US and European countries, many wondered why India was not severely affected by COVID-19.
Many believed that somewhat India’s quick decision of locking down early and not stopping the entrance of people from other countries are the reasons. While many theories emerged suggesting that probably Indians have any sort of immunity to the disease, or maybe the disease did not easily spread in hotter places. And there was also a theory that the lower number of cases in India is because of the BCG vaccine, which is meant to treat tuberculosis. However, most of these theories are vague and yet to be substantiated.
However, these theories have given a hope to the Indian government that the spread will certainly reduce in the coming hot and humid season in India and thus they applied lockdown for a few months.
But WHO has recently debunked this myth that COVDI-19 cannot spread in hot and humid climates. According to them, the virus can be transmitted in ALL AREAS. It has nothing to do with any hot or cold weather. So, just follow all the steps to prevent the disease.
And the Government’ Aarogya Setu app will also do a little to help if our hospitals are not well prepared for a surge of corona infected patients.
Don’t Expect a COVID-19 Vaccine soon
According to the Associated Press, 100 research groups are working worldwide to find out the coronavirus vaccine and a dozen are at early stages of human trials. A tremendous amount of money and effort is being put into the research of Corona cure.
But at this stage, you should remember that the testing stage of any vaccine alone usually takes several years. And if the testing is complete, the mass production and distribution of the vaccine will take time.
Meanwhile, other ways of treating COVID-19 are also being looked at. For instance, Japan and the US have cleared the usage of the medicine remdesivir for corona infected people, since it appears to speed up recovery. Health Ministry of India is looking to manufacture the drug in the country. However, remember that this drug will not kill the virus but just increase the recovery time. So, at least we cannot expect any sort of medical solution very soon. Even a global team of epidemiologists led by researchers from Harvard TH School of Public Health and US-based University of Minnesota also concluded that we need to prepare ourselves to live with the disease and the tools or medicines that we already have- until 2022.