- Jun 17, 2020
- in Health
What Happens If the Coronavirus Never Goes Away?
කොරෝනා වයිරසය කිසි දිනෙක නැති නොවන්නේ නම් කුමක් සිදුවේද?
What happens if the Coronavirus ne'er goes away as the World Health Organization warns?
I tend to require WHO notices and warnings with a pinch of salt currently. They did not warn the globe adequately in late Dec, early January. perhaps they were duped or even they didn't wish to scare the globe while not thorough investigation. perhaps they were gullible.
What is R0 value?
Three possibilities exist for the potential transmission or decline of a disease, depending on its R0 value:
- If R0 is less than 1, each existing infection causes less than one new infection. In this case, the disease will decline and eventually die out.
- If R0 equals 1, each existing infection causes one new infection. The disease will stay alive and stable, but there won’t be an outbreak or an epidemic.
- If R0 is more than 1, each existing infection causes more than one new infection. The disease will be transmitted between people, and there may be an outbreak or epidemic.
Importantly, a disease’s R0 value only applies when everyone in a population is completely vulnerable to the disease. This means:
- no one has been vaccinated
- no one has had the disease before
- there’s no way to control the spread of the disease
This combination of conditions is rare nowadays thanks to advances in medicine. Many diseases that were deadly in the past can now be contained and sometimes cured.
For example, in 1918 there was a worldwide outbreak of the swine flu that killed 50 million people. According to a review article published in BMC Medicine, the R0 value of the 1918 pandemic was estimated to be between 1.4 and 2.8.
But when the swine flu, or H1N1 virus, came back in 2009, its R0 value was between 1.4 and 1.6, report researchers in the journal Science. The existence of vaccines and antiviral drugs made the 2009 outbreak much less deadly.
(Source Basic reproduction number - Wikipedia):
COVID-19 is at the moment on the number 4 position. Now we know why SARS fizzled out. It’s R0 factor is near 1 and many times less than 1.
There is also another factor. This is how many deaths occur per 1000 infections. A parasite can survive if the host survives. MERS and EBOLA had a very high “killing rates”. That is why they did not spread wide. COVID-19 spreads (like influenza) but does not kill that many. Finally, a Virus - unlike bacteria - may not be killed completely. Most cannot be. Some like Small Pox has been eradicated, but we are yet to see the elimination of influenza.
It is therefore my belief that COVID-19 is here to stay. We may find a vaccine that controls the spread and cures the patient quicker so that fewer deaths occur. It may even slip from the current 4th to the same level as Influenza. But it may never go away. What will happen then? We will learn to live with it. Over time, the body will develop some immunity, some resistance, some antibodies. We will remember 2020 as the year of the global lockdown.
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