Ads Top

Defeating COVID-19 will take months

Canada's Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland speaks at a news conference on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada March 19, 2020. BLAIR GABLE / REUTERS

 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday Canadians could be living with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic for weeks or months.

Based on what public health experts are saying, it will be months.

The reason for the extraordinary measures federal and provincial governments are taking to contain this highly infectious virus, comes from the fact its current rate of transmission is about 2.5 people per infected individual.

Left unchecked, the number of people infected will increase exponentially, day after day, making millions of Canadians sick in a very short time.

While 80% of COVID-19 infections are mild — some may not even know they have it — 15% result in serious illness and 5% leave patients in critical condition, requiring intensive care in hospital, able to breathe only with respirators.

Even 5% of COVID-19 patients becoming critically ill, if left unchecked, would quickly overwhelm our health system.

Social distancing, along with personal hygiene practices such as frequent hand-washing will, over time, reduce the number of people infected by someone who already has the virus, to less than one other person, thus curtailing its growth.

 e’re not at that point because it takes time for social distancing, which we’ve just started, to initially level off the number of new cases (“flattening the curve”) before the daily numbers begin to decline.
That’s why the number of people infected, and those who die from the virus, will increase across the country daily, for some time, before it slows down.

The good news is social distancing and preventative personal hygiene practices work.

That’s evidenced by China, the original epicentre of the pandemic, where the number of new cases each day has fallen dramatically due to aggressive social distancing.

The bad news is ending social distancing too early would result in the pandemic flaring up again, even though it’s already having a devastating impact on our economy.

That’s why federal and provincial governments are pouring billions of dollars into income replacement and economic stimulus.

Unfortunately, there’s no quick or easy way out of this.

Until a vaccine is developed, social distancing is the most effective tool we have to fight COVID-19 and, as hard as it is, we must follow the rules and give it time to work.

Toronto Sun 

Powered by Blogger.