Coronavirus: Why Is It Important To Act Now?

If there is something everyone is concerned about, it is Coronavirus. With research going on and the number of patients increasing continuously, the most difficult part indeed is deciding what one should do today. Should we wait for some more information to come out? Can we do something about it today?

The coronavirus is reaching every nook and corner of this world. It’s growing like anything: gradually first, and then suddenly. This is going to happen in the next few days.

Maybe by this week or next. When this happens, the healthcare system in your country will be overwhelmed because of a sudden boost in the number of cases. Your fellow citizens may have to get treatments in the hallways due to lack of space.

Exhausted healthcare professionals will start breaking down. Some may even die. There will not be enough oxygen and they may have to choose which person gets the oxygen and survives, and which one doesn’t.

The only way to stop this virus is social distancing without any delay. If you live in an area, where the pandemic is not at its worst yet, you must be thankful to God! And, you must take all the steps to ensure better protection for you as well as your fellow citizens.

Start today. Or, there will be no tomorrow. That means we all must stay in our homes as much as possible, starting today. If you are a politician, or a business or community leader, you must use your power to prevent this on your responsibility.

You might be having your fears. You may feel like you are overreacting to the situation. You may be concerned about your neighbours laughing at you. You may even be feared of people getting angry. You may feel like you will look stupid.

You may think it would be better if others do this first. You may also be concerned about your economy. And, it’s alright! But think what will happen if you didn’t do it today?

The entire world is already in lockdown; and the ones who have been following the formula of social distancing have saved many lives, people are not criticizing them anymore; they are instead thanking them for taking the right step.

The Possible Number of Coronavirus Cases in the Different Parts of the Globe

If we look at the case history, the total number of Covid-19 cases grew exponentially by the time the virus was in China. But then, it spread outside and became a pandemic which is out of control.

There are no vaccines or medicines available that can completely stop the coronavirus. All the governments have been suggesting the steps for coronavirus prevention as that is the only way to stop the spread. As of today, the situation has become worse mostly because of Italy, Iran & South Korea.

Source: Johns Hopkins University

There are large numbers of Coronavirus cases in South Korea, Iran and Italy that it’s unfortunate to see people dying at a rate nobody had imagined. There are many countries where the cases are growing exponentially. And, most of these countries are Western.

Source: medium.com

In order to understand the severity of the pandemic, or how to stop it, we need to closely look at the countries that have already been through this: China, Italy, and the Eastern countries that were affected by SARS. So, let’s start with the producer i.e China.

China

There must have been a large difference between the daily number of cases reported and the actual ones. The Chinese CDC had figured out the cases by asking the infected people during their diagnostics after they experienced the coronavirus symptoms.

The exact number of true cases are not known till date. So, we can only estimate them by looking backwards. On January 21st, the number of new known cases was exploding: there were 100 new cases. Actually, there were at least 1,500 new cases on the day that were growing exponentially. It’s just that the authorities were not aware of the exact count. All they knew was that 100 new cases had been reported suddenly of the new disease.

Within the next two days, the authorities had shut down Wuhan. At that time, the number of known daily new Corona cases was around 400. It is possible that they had made a decision of locking down the city after seeing 400 new cases on a daily basis. However, in reality, the scenario was worse; a minimum of 2,500 new cases was there on that day which they didn’t know about.

On the very next day,  they shut down the other 15 cities in the Hubei province. Until January 23, until Wuhan got closed, the number of Coronavirus cases were growing exponentially in China. True cases were actually exploding. However, as soon as Wuhan was locked, cases slowed down dramatically. On January 24, when the other 15 cities were closed, the number of cases witnessed a halt. After two days, the maximum number of cases were diagnosed, and it went down and down after that.

If you look at the data revealed by China, you will find that for the next 12 days, the number of new coronavirus cases was still exploding but it was actually not. It’s just that the existing cases were getting stronger, patients were getting serious coronavirus symptoms, and visiting the clinics for treatment more. Also, the system for diagnosing them was stronger. So, it looked like an explosion for the next few days which can actually be defined as a result of the previous scenario.

This difference between the number of official cases and the true ones is important and will help later in understanding the scenario better.

The rest of the parts of China were well coordinated because of the immediate actions taken by the central government. The result was a virus-free country in a short span of time. Thanks to the drastic measures taken by the Chinese government!

These cases had the potential to grow exponentially, but because of the steps taken as early as the end of January, the virus stopped before it could get worse. Now, they are focusing on treating the existing patients and reportedly, there are no new coronavirus cases.

Meanwhile, Italy, Iran and South Korea could have learnt from China but they didn’t. The cases started there with the same exponential growth rate as of Hubei and it kept growing and reached its worst.

Eastern Countries

Coronavirus cases in South Korea have exploded, but isn’t it surprising why the same didn’t happen with Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Japan, or Hong Kong? Have you ever wondered?

Taiwan didn’t even witness 50 cases because of its awareness towards such pandemics. Many of these countries were affected by SARS in the year 2003, and they learned from it. They knew how viral and severe it could be for all, so they took it seriously in the very beginning. That’s the reason behind all of them, despite having cases that were growing at first, still didn’t have exponential growth rates.

So far, you must have stories of the virus exploding and going out of control, governments realizing the situation and the coming danger, and preparing themselves. For the rest of other countries, however, the story is completely different. Before we start discussing them in detail, let’s take a look at South Korea. In South Korea, the coronavirus was under control until the first 30 cases were detected.

Patient 31 turned out to be a spreader who passed the virus to thousands of fellow citizens. Remember the fact that the virus spreads much before it starts showing symptoms which is very dangerous. That’s the reason, by the moment the authorities of South Korea realized the situation, the virus had taken over the entire country.

They’re now facing the consequences of what happened there. And it shows that even one ignorance may be a threat to the entire population. Italy has already been suffering from the virus, being on top of the charts in terms of numbers of cases, with Iran being close to it.

New York

Who doesn’t know about the haunting situation of New York City? As per a recent study published in JAMA, around 90% of patients infected from corona who were placed on ventilators on or after March 1 and before April 4 have died. Among those patients, the mortality rate was 97.2% for the people aged over 65 and 76.4% for the patients of age 18 to 65, according to the report.

Now, you see how horrible the situation has already been. In a city that is considered to be among the world’s best cities and is laced with all the modern healthcare infrastructure, the death rate is horrible. The only way to prevent the virus is social distancing as this is what New York City has been lacking. If the authorities had announced a complete lockdown back in March, the scenario would have been much better there.

Washington State

You’ve already read about the growth of Covid-19 in Western countries, and how inaccurate forecasts of one week turned the entire game. Now imagine that containment doesn’t take place as it happened in Wuhan or the other Eastern countries, and all of us have to deal with a colossal epidemic.

In order to understand better, let’s look at some cases, including the ones from Washington State, Paris, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Madrid.

Washington State can be said to be the US’s Wuhan, looking at the number of Coronavirus cases that are growing exponentially. On March 10, the number was 140 and it has dramatically grown since then. But something weird happened during that time.

When there were just 3 cases, the death rate was unbelievable. At a point when the state had as less as just 3 cases, it witnessed one death. You must know that for other places, the death rate of Covid-19 is something around 0.5% and 5%. So, how can the death rate reach 33%? Isn’t it shocking?

It was found that the Coronavirus there had been growing for weeks and remained undetected. It’s not that there were just 3 cases. The fact is, the authorities only got to know about 3 out of which died. It happened because it was assumed for the symptoms to be shown for people to get tested. Can you imagine the situation?

This is almost like what happened in China: Here, they were only able to knew about the official cases and things seemed to be good: only 3 cases. But in reality, the situation was horrible. There were hundreds, or maybe thousands of actual Corona cases.

This is the problem: we only get to know about the official cases, and not the real number. But you need to have an idea of the true ones.  The question is how can you do that? It turns out, you can use a couple of methods. Let’s see what they are.

First way to estimate the number of true cases is through deaths. If you know the number of deaths in your area, you can easily figure out an approximate number of true cases without a hassle. You know approximately how much time it takes for a person in getting infected from the virus and reaching death on average (around 17.3 days).

That means the Washington State patient who died on Feb 29 probably got the virus around Feb 12. Now, you know the death rate. For this scenario, let’s say it is 1%. It means that, on Feb 12, there must already be ~100 cases in the region (of which one died 17.3 days later). Now, you know the average doubling time (average time taken to double cases).

It’s 6.2 which means that, in a span of 17 days that it took a person to die, the number of cases had to be multiplied by ~8 (=2^(17/6)). It means that, if a proper diagnosis is not done, one death on a day means around 800 true cases on that day. Washington state had 22 deaths in the second week of March. With this quick calculation, we get ~16,000 true cases of Coronavirus by that time. These cases were equal to the official number of cases in Iran and Italy together by that time.

Now, if we get into more detail, we see that 19 of these deaths happened from one cluster, so the virus was probably not spread widely by these 19. So if we can consider those 19 as one death, the total deaths must be four by that time. Calculating again by that number, there must still be ~3,000 cases by that day.

This approach by Trevor Bedford takes the viruses themselves into account and considers their mutations for estimating the current number of cases.

The official number of cases of Coronavirus was ~1,100 in Washington state by that time. None of these calculations are perfect, but they all indicated the same thing: We don’t have an idea of the true cases, but one thing is for sure that there are more real cases than the official ones; and the difference is big. It may not be in the hundreds; it may be in the thousands, or maybe more than that.

San Francisco Bay Area

San Francisco seemed to be blessed initially. Until March, this region didn’t have a single death. So, it was actually a difficult task to figure out the exact number of true cases there. Officially, there were just 86 Corona cases.

But the US was vastly under testing. And, the reason was the unavailability of enough testing kits. So, the country decided to manufacture its own corona test kit, which didn’t work. Turkey, with no coronavirus cases, had done 10 times more tests than the US in terms of per inhabitant testing. So, you can easily imagine how poor the situation is in the US.

Here, you can use a ratio of official Corona cases to the true ones for finding out the true cases in the Bay area. But how would you decide which one to consider? Let us help you with that.

For the Bay Area, tests were being done for all the people who had travelled to San Francisco or were in touch with someone who had travelled, which means that they had the data for most of the travel-related corona cases, but they didn’t have any record for the community spread Coronavirus cases. By having an idea of the ratio of community spread and travel spread cases, we can guess how many true cases must have been there.

We looked at the data for South Korea, which was 86 cases by that time, the % of them for community spread Coronavirus cases was 86% (here, 86 and 86% were a nice coincidence). With this count, you can easily find out the number of true cases. If the Bay Area had 86 cases on that day, it must have ~600 real cases.

France and Paris

France had reported 1,400 cases by mid-March and 30 deaths. If we use the two methods mentioned above, there must have been true cases somewhere between 24,000 to 140,000 which is much higher than the cases reported. Now, remember what happened in Wuhan.

When Wuhan had reported only 444 cases, there were 27 times more in real. Similarly, if France thinks that it has only 1,400 cases, there might have been tens of thousands of cases in reality.

The same thing applies to Paris. With ~30 reported cases, the true number must have been in the hundreds, or maybe thousands. It takes time for the Coronavirus symptoms to show, you should not forget that.

Spain and Madrid

The number of cases reported in Spain was similar to France (1,200 cases and 30 deaths). It means the ratio was almost similar. If we go through the same calculation, Spain must already have at least 20k true Coronavirus cases.

Coming to the Comunidad de Madrid, there were 600 official cases reported with 17 confirmed deaths. So, the true number of Coronavirus cases is somewhere between 10,000 to 60,000.

If you go through these data, it will seem to be impossible. But unfortunately, this is the sad reality. The virus is much bigger than one had ever imagined.

What Will Be The Scenario If These Cases Materialize?

So the coronavirus is growing exponentially and there is no cure yet. What will be the scenario in your countries if it affects the masses? It’s easy to guess, because we have already seen the data for a number of places where things are happening.

The best examples to be considered are Hubei and Italy. One can go through the data and estimate how ugly the situation can be once the Covid-19 virus goes out of control.

Fatality Rates

According to WHO (World Health Organization), the fatality rate is 3.4%. The fatality rate is the rate at which people get infected by the coronavirus and then die. This number also seems to be out of context, so let us get into more details.

If you see, there are no fixed rates. The fatality rates may be different for the different countries. It actually depends: the rate is 0.6% for South Korea and 4.4% for Iran. So, where does this difference come from? We can understand it better using a trick.

You can use two ways to calculate the fatality rate for a country that are: (1) Number of Deaths/Total Cases and (2) Number of Deaths/Closed Cases. The first method will most probably be an underestimated data, as many open cases may still get out of control and reach death, thereby making the estimation inaccurate.

The second may provide an overestimation of the scenario, as deaths may be closed quicker as compared to recoveries. So, let’s see how both of these evolve over time.

Both of these calculations will give the same result after all the Coronavirus cases are closed. So, let’s take the past trends into consideration for the future predictions, so that you can get a more accurate count of the final fatality rate. China’s fatality rate was 3.6% to 6.1% in March.

If you project this data in the future, it becomes something around ~3.8%-4%. We also charted the data for Italy, Iran, and South Korea, and found it to converging towards the 3%-4% bracket for both Italy and Iran.

The most shocking rate was for South Korea. While the deaths / total cases was only 0.6%, the deaths / closed cases rate was a whopping 48%. There may be some sense in these completely disconnected rates.

First, they had been testing everybody and keeping the Coronavirus cases open for a longer time period. Second, South Korea has more number of hospital beds, and there might be some other reasons too which we don’t have an idea about.

You must keep in mind that the age distribution in these countries must also have impacted the rates: Since mortality would have been much higher for older patients, countries with aging populations such as Japan may be harder hit than younger countries such as Nigeria. Weather factors, such as humidity and temperature, may also affect the fatality rates.

Hence, it can be concluded that the countries that take quick actions can effectively reduce the fatality rate. Acting fast will also help drastically reducing the number of cases. Countries that take quick actions can save their people and reduce the death counts by 10x.

What Preparations Should A Country Make?

In the case of pandemics, healthcare systems are subjected to the most pressure. Looking at the current scenario to survive from coronavirus, around 20% of Coronavirus patients need to be hospitalized, 5% of them may need the ICU (Intensive Care Unit), and 2.5% need very intensive medical help, with equipment such as ventilators and ECMO (extra-corporeal oxygenation).

The problem here is that ventilators and ECMO, or other such items can’t be produced in a short span of time or bought easily. For instance, the USA had only 250 ECMO machines, few years back. So, if there are 100,000 cases all of a sudden, the situation may be vulnerable. Around 20,000 patients will need hospitalization, around 5,000 of them will require the ICU, and around 1,000 will need items that we may not have enough in number.

This is the scenario with just 100,000 cases. And this is without considering other issues like masks. If we talk about the USA, it has just 1% of the number of masks required to meet the demands of its healthcare professionals. In such situations, if there are large numbers of Coronavirus cases coming to notice all at once, there will not be masks enough for even 2 weeks.

Countries such as Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and China (except Hubei) were prepared for the upcoming situation and provided the care that their patients needed. But the Western countries are rather in the direction of Italy and Hubei. So what is going on there?

What Does An Overwhelmed Healthcare System in A Region Look Like?

What happened in Hubei and Italy had started becoming eerily similar to one another. Hubei had built two hospitals within just ten days. Even after doing that, the situation was out of control, their healthcare systems were overwhelmed. Both of them had complained of patients inundating their hospitals badly. They were supposed to be treated anywhere: may be in hallways, or waiting rooms…

Healthcare professionals have been spending hours in a single PPE, as they don’t get enough PPEs. Because of that, they have to be in the infected areas for many hours. As a result, they crumble, get dehydrated and exhausted when they leave. Shifts are nothing more than a joke these days. People who were retired are now driven back to the hospitals in order to meet the healthcare requirements of their countries. People who have never done nursing are now being trained overnight so that they can fulfill critical roles.

And this goes on, until they themselves fall sick. It is happening a lot, as they’re in constant touch with the virus, that too without sufficient protective gear. When it happens, they are put in quarantine for the next 14 days. During this period, they can’t help. In the best situations, 2 weeks become unproductive.

In the worst scenarios, they’re dead which is unfortunate. The ones who have been saving lives come to an end that they don’t deserve. The worst things can be witnessed in the ICUs, where the corona patients have to share their ventilators and ECMOs.

These items are actually impossible to share which means only one patient can use it at a time, so the healthcare workers have to determine what patient is going to use it. It literally means, they have to choose the one who lives and leave the one who dies.

What Can You Do?

Reduce the impact

Coronavirus is a pandemic now. It is impossible to eliminate it all at once. All you can do is reduce the impact and bring it to its lowest. Some countries have set examples on this. You should look at Taiwan.

The country is well connected with China but it still has the least number of cases. The country has been capable of containing the virus, but most countries couldn’t do the same and facing the consequences. Now, they’re trying to deal with it in a different way, through mitigation. They are trying their best to make the virus as inoffensive as possible.

It is that simple! If we bring the infections to a minimum, the healthcare systems will be efficiently handling cases in a much better way, and the fatality rate will be brought down. And, if we continue doing this, there will a point at which the rest of the population can be vaccinated, thereby eliminating the virus altogether.

Patience is the key! So our goal should not be to eliminate the virus contagions. The strategy should be to postpone it for as long as possible. The more cases we postpone, the better our healthcare system will be able to function, the lower will be the mortality rate, and the higher the number of people that can be vaccinated before they get infected with the virus.

How Can We Do That?

Social Distancing

This is the only way to defend corona. And, this is a very simple thing to do. Social distancing can help reduce the impact of the virus. If we go back to the Wuhan scenario, we see that only after the authorities announced a complete lockdown, cases went down. It happened people didn’t get to interact or meet each other, which helped to control the spread of the virus.

As per the current scientific research, the coronavirus spreads within 6 feet (2 meters) if the infected person coughs. One can get infected only if in touch with the person at a distance less than the above mentioned one. Otherwise, the droplets containing the virus fall to the ground and will not infect the other people. The worst type of infection spreads through the infected surfaces.

The virus may survive for as long as 9 days depending on the surface. The time period of survival of Coronavirus may be different for different surfaces. It means daily things that we come in contact with such as doorknobs, elevator buttons or other such surfaces can be horrible infection vectors and must be avoided.

The only way to combat the virus is social distancing: stay home and motivate the others to do the same, until this phase gets over. There is no other way, we need to understand that. You can learn from your past; to be precise, the flu pandemic in 1918.

You can take the example of Philadelphia in 1918 which didn’t act on time, and witnessed a massive boost in death rates. Now, compare that with the data of St Louis, which took necessary precautions on time. Then take a look at the data for Denver, which took preventive measures at first and then didn’t continue that. The result was a double peak in death rates, with the 2nd data much higher than the first one.

It looked like Italy had finally got the secret to deal with the pandemic. They had locked down only Lombardy first, and the very next day, they realized the mistake they made and decided to put a lockdown on the entire Italy.

Now, remember the data for Wuhan. There was a long 12 days’ gap between the announcement of lockdown in the city and the day when the number of official cases started reducing.

Read More: Coronavirus: Foods To Eat & Precautions To Follow This Quarantine

How Can Politicians Help Maintain Social Distancing?

Politicians can contribute to social distancing through the right and quick strategies and decisions. There are many stages to reduce the impact of an epidemic and control it, which starts with anticipation and ends with eradication.

But considering the current scenario, it seems to be too late for all these options now. Looking at the number of cases, the only options left in front of politicians are containment, and mitigation or suppression. Let’s know them in detail.

Containment

Containment means, politicians must ensure that all the cases in their area are identified, diagnosed, and isolated. This is exactly what Singapore, Taiwan or South Korea are doing so far: They are good at limiting people coming in quickly, identifying the patients, immediately isolating them, using heavy PPEs to protect their doctors and workers, tracking all the people who were in touch with these infected people, and isolating them. Containment is really effective if you’re prepared and doing it early on without a delay.

Taiwan’s approach is also worth appreciation. They handled it really well. But China’s approach was good too. The extent to which it went in order to contain the epidemic is just mind-boggling. For instance, they had around 1,800 teams, each consisting of 5 people who tracked every single infected person, and all the people they got in touch with, then all the others those people had interacted with, and isolated the bunch. It was a tough task to do but they managed to do it. That’s how China was able to contain the Coronavirus across a country of billions of people.

Western countries could not do the same. And now it has been too late to take such steps. According to the recent US announcement, it had banned most of the travel from Europe as a containment measure. Think of a country which had around 3 times the Coronavirus cases that Hubei had at the time of its shut down, and these cases were growing exponentially. Can it be said to be enough?

Read More: Prevent Coronavirus With These Healthy Tips

In order to understand it better, let’s take a look at the Wuhan travel ban. The Wuhan travel ban, reportedly, had not delayed the epidemic to a great extent. If we compare the scenario after 40 to 90 percent travel was eliminated with that if nothing would have been done, we don’t get to see much difference.

Researchers had estimated that the Wuhan travel ban had only delayed the Coronavirus spread in the country by 3–5 days. It can be said that the travel ban combined with social distancing will be helpful.

So, we can conclude that the US administration’s decision of the European travel ban was a good one. It must have probably caused a delay of a few hours, or maybe one or two days, but not more than that. And it cannot be said to be enough.

Once the number of cases reaches in hundreds or thousands in the population which is constantly growing at an exponential rate, preventing more people from coming from the foreign countries, tracking the existing patients and putting their contacts in quarantine doesn’t work. The next thing is mitigation or suppression. Let’s see what it is.

Mitigation or Suppression

In mitigation, a great amount of testing of patients, contact tracing, and isolations are required to flatten the curve. Suppression is about going one step further and heavy social distancing is required. People have to completely stop hanging out in order to drop the rate of transmission (R), from the R=~2–3, which the virus follows if proper measures were not taken, to as low as 1, in order to completely eliminate it.

These measures include closing companies, mass transit, schools, shops, and enforcing lockdown in the region. The earlier heavy measures are imposed, the less time it requires to keep them, the less time it takes to identify the cases, and the smaller number of people get infected from the virus.

Wuhan did the same. And Italy, and then Spain, and the other countries had to follow the same as there was no other way left. Once the virus is at its worst, the only way is to put a lockdown on all the infected regions in order to stop it from spreading at once.

With the number of official cases in thousands, and true cases being around tens of thousands, this is what the US, and other countries need to do. Some businesses have started working from home, that’s great. Some big events are cancelled. Some affected regions are in quarantine by themselves. All these steps will definitely slow down the impact. They may bring the transmission rate down to 2.2 from 2.5, maybe 2. But still, they will not be enough to get the rate below 1 and stop the epidemic. So, the question remains the same: how can we lower the rate?

Italy has got the answer. This is what they had announced:

  • Nobody is allowed to enter or exit the areas that are under lockdown unless they have proven family or other relevant reasons.
  • No movement is permitted inside the areas unless there is something urgent that can’t be postponed until the lockdown gets over.
  • People with symptoms (which includes fever and respiratory infection) are “highly recommended” to stay home.
  • Standard time off is suspended for all the healthcare workers.
  • All educational institutions (schools, universities), museums, ski stations, gyms, theatres, cultural & social centres, and swimming pools must be closed.
  • The opening times for bars and restaurants must be limited from 6 am to 6 pm, and there must be at least one-meter distance between people present there.
  • All clubs and pubs must be closed.
  • All commercial activities must ensure a distance of one meter between customers. The ones that can’t ensure the same must close. Temples may stay open as long as this distance can be guaranteed by them.
  • Hospital visits by family and friends must be limited.
  • Work meetings will be postponed. Work from home should be encouraged.
  • All sports competitions and events, public or private, must be cancelled. Important events can only be held behind closed doors.

Then just after two days, they added: In fact, all the businesses which aren’t crucial must be closed. All commercial activities, cafes, offices and shops must be closed. Only transportation, groceries, and pharmacies will remain open.

Now the question is: How should one choose the right measures for a country? One option is to increase the measures gradually. Unfortunately, it gives enough time for the Coronavirus to spread. So, if you want to stay safe, you should go with the Wuhan style. People will complain now, but definitely, they will thank you after this phase gets over.

How Can Business Owners Help Maintain Social Distancing?

As a business owner, you must be aware of your role. You must implement social distancing policies that are being enacted by mang US tech companies. It includes encouraging Work From Home, restricting visits, corporate events and travel. There are many more things you must determine, like deciding whether to open the office or not, conducting interviews, etc.

Conclusion: When To Act?

Hopefully, you’ve agreed with all we’ve said so far, and must be wondering when to make these decisions. The answer is now! It might look like a tough decision to make but you must remember that waiting may cost you lives. So, you shouldn’t see it this way.

Take the examples of Wuhan and Italy and you will get to know how important every moment can be in a virus that spreads exponentially. You have seen how even one-day delay has made a difference. You must look at the data for Hubei; waiting for one more day caused 40% more Coronavirus cases!

So, it is possible that if the Hubei authorities had announced the lockdown on January 22 instead of January 23, they might have got better results with the number of cases reduced by a staggering 20k. Waiting will only give rise to more cases, and eventually more deaths. There would be increased pressure on the healthcare system.

Our healthcare systems may collapse leading to an increased mortality rate, by up to 10x. So, a one-day delay in taking social distancing measures may end boosting the number of deaths by multiplying more Coronavirus cases. The moment to take a step is now!

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