BRIGHT SIDE OF COVID 19
By Aarav Modi
COVID-19 this is one name that has shaken the world. COVID-19 is a disease caused by a coronavirus. Human coronaviruses are common and are typically linked with moderate illnesses, related to the common cold. “Coronavirus” belongs to a family of viruses that range from the common cold to more critical illnesses like SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome). This virus is believed to be originated from a wet market in Wuhan, China. Like many other wet markets across Asia, farmed and exotic animals are tied up or stacked in cages. Many are maimed on-site to guarantee freshness. The markets are considered breeding areas for new and dangerous diseases, health experts say, because the close contact between humans and live foreign animals makes it easier for viruses to jump between species. SARS rose from the same kind of market in 2002. In this case, COVID 19 is believed to be a bat virus as the structure of the virus is similar.
As of April 1st, 2020, there has been a total number of 9,538 cases of COVID-19 with 1,402 cases resolved in Canada. On March 3rd, 2020, it was announced that COVID 19 is a pandemic by the World Health Organization. A pandemic is a disease that spreads on a large geographical scale. However, a pandemic does not include the severity of the disease. Compared to other pandemics, such as H1N1 Swine flu, COVID - 19 is milder. One crucial myth buster is that if you get the virus then you can most certainly recover. According to CNN, it only has a 0.66 percent death rate, still higher than the average flu virus, which is 0.10 percent. In Canada, although it is the sixteenth county with the most cases, only two percent who are infected are in serious condition. This does not mean that there will be a decrease in cases just yet. Doctors say that a vaccine can only be available in eighteen months. Yet, countries such as Japan, South Korea and China have shown signs of improvement. Most of the cases in China have been mild and the patients almost always improve. According to the China National Health Commission, 87 percent of patients infected with COVID-19 have recovered and only four percent have died. Although China’s position on the battlefield against COVID - 19 is improving slightly, the question still remains for the rest of the world. Can the hit of the pandemic be slowed down?
The approach that Canada is taking is “flattening the curve”. Luckily Canada has not been hit as hard as countries such as the USA, Italy and Iran. These countries did not take immediate measures and there are many factors to blame, such as geographic, demographic and political factors. Yet, countries like South Korea immediately isolated people who were infected and restricted. “Flattening the curve” is the term taken when using an epidemic curve or an epi-curve. An epi-curve is a graph that shows the frequency of the cases over time and the cases per day. What people want to see is the trend to peak then slowly decline as more cases are under control and within healthcare capacity. What measures are our Canadian government taking to restrict the growth of COVID 19? To start off with, travel purposes such as recreation, tourism and entertainment are restricted. Quarantine officers are placed at the four major airports; Calgary International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, Toronto’s Pearson International Airport and Montréal’s Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport and inspect all travellers.
Obviously, this has happened many times before but is the world prepared for another disaster like this? We all must have two focuses that we must complete. We need to have patience and a positive mindset. With patience, we must also practice all the necessary precautions such as social distancing and to maintain proper hygiene. Only then will the pandemic slow down. The other is to keep a positive mindset. Think of it like this, the world has united with one purpose; to stop the spread of COVID-19. We always listen to the news about countries in conflict. Now we hear of how they are doing their best to use their resources to help each other, no matter how far apart they are.