Did you see Bill Gates on CNN last week? He was impressive. In clear language, he stuck to the facts and figures — and he made sense.
He has had lots of money to spend, and some of it he has spent on future pandemics. This was after the SARS pandemic of 2003. He wrote an article that defined what governments should do when the next pandemic strikes.
Did they act on this? Nope. In fact, President Trump closed down the Office of Infectious Diseases in the White House.
It seems that if the USA had acted like Gates recommended, our country might have been in a much better situation. Apparently South Korea, Hong-Kong, and Singapore did exactly that and their virus is contained.
PREDICTED OUTCOMES FOR NEW MEXICO
Bill Gates also funded a group at the University of Washington to develop a model to predict the outcome of a pandemic. The figure here shows the results of this model applied to New Mexico.
The total deaths by month are shown by the yellow band, which expresses the uncertainty of the prediction. The average deaths by month is shown by the dashed red line.
For example, less than 5 deaths by April 1, 300 deaths by May 1, 500 deaths by June 1. After that the curve has flattened and there are only a few more deaths.
The yellow band shows it could be worse than this, but it could also be better than this.
NUMBER OF INFECTIONS.
Typically 2-3% of infections lead to death. So the number of infections on April 1 would be less than 200, by May 1 about 12,000, by June 1 about 20,000 infections.
BUT, if there are no new deaths after June1, there would be no new infections after May 15 because the infection lasts about two weeks. This suggests we have to be continue the habits of social-distancing and washing hands and avoid touching our face until May 15. That’s six weeks from now.
So there’s hope for New Mexico. But there’s enough uncertainty in the yellow band of the figure that we should continue to be diligent about our new habits, because the numbers may change.
Here is a list of habits recommended by Dr David Price, a critical pulmonary-care specialist at Weill Cornell Hospital in New York City. Usually he deals with all kinds of respiratory ailments, but now he’s dealing only with COVID-19 patients. I got this information from a separate website.
Dr Price does a conference call describing his experience. It’s a long video (57 minutes), and overall reassuring.
To play the video, click HERE.
Bottom line: COVID-19 is becoming well understood. If you practice good hand cleanliness procedures and distancing, you have nothing to worry about.
1. Hand to face is the critical path. Spray, rarely.
2. Get into the habit of knowing where your hands are and be sure they are clean. (sanitizer)
3. Wear a mask, not to protect you, but simply to avoid hand to face contact.
4. You don’t need an N-95 mask. Anything will do. Give N-97 to your local hospital.
5. Carry sanitizer with you when you go out.
6. Be friendly and social, just stay 6′ away.
7. Shrink your social circle. You don’t want to be in large groups.
8. Go to the hospital only if you are short of breath. Headache, fever, muscle ache, cough – stay home.
9. Course of the disease is 7 -14 days. Immunity then follows.
If you follow the simple rules, you will not get COVID-19.
• Clean your hands frequently, after opening doors, etc. Cary a bottle of Purell with you.
• Avoid touching your face, unless your hands are clean. Wear gloves to remind you.
• Keep 6 feet away from others. Avoid groups.
• Understand the modeling predictions as seen in the figure. They lessen the overall uncertainty and this can lower our anxiety.
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