When the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) was officially a pandemic, the world has faced tremendous changes in their daily lives to cope and avoid contracting the virus.
Today, experts have estimated that COVID-19 will linger for another two years, as countries race towards the production of a viable vaccine.
“The pandemic won’t end properly until there’s enough immunity – ideally from a vaccine – to stop cases and hospitalizations rising again,” said Adam Kucharski, a scientist and an associate professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine who is among the leading experts in the field.
Kucharski, in a report through ideas.ted.com, outlined several facts backed by research and questions regarding the coronavirus that still baffle even seasoned experts from around the world.
Geographic source of the virus. The world presumed that the initial cases were mostly from Asia. However, scientists who have tracked the genetic signature of the virus recorded that the vast majority of UK’s early infections came from Italy and Spain as early as February – weeks before these two countries reported their first local transmission.
Airborne transmission. Several case studies have already confirmed the risks of indoor group gatherings as in a case in Germany were 11 out of a group of 13 people who were in a meeting the entire day contracted the virus.
Outbreaks can be managed without lockdowns. South Korea and HongKong have shown the world that they didn’t need to enforce strict lockdowns. They instead urged individuals to wear masks in public spaces and work from home whenever possible. Most public spaces have also been closed for a specific period of time.
Pandemic preparedness. Data has shown that not even first world countries have prepared for a virus at this massive scale. However, its has been proven that governments with clear and effective messaging will get the attention and compliance of a responsive and responsible public.
Easing restrictions lead to new outbreaks. Another key factor that experts have found out was that whenever a country eases its restrictions after reporting lower numbers of cases, the coronavirus disease found its way back in a reintensified state as numbers resurge.