Again, the issue in many ways is not the virus. It’s our inadequate illness response system, world-wide. How did it get this way and is it going to remain inadequate?
If we’d had sufficient Personal Protective Equipment, quarantine facilities, better housing options for Seniors and other vulnerable populations and an adequate national food supply system, we could have easily outlasted CoVid-19.
And remember, CoVid-19 is just one of a number of new viruses that we will be facing.
We are regularly coming in contact with viruses for which we haven’t developed an immunity nor a vaccine. Plus the viruses are doing what all living things do, they change (mutate) over time. So we need to focus on what we can do to better manage the next one.
People are talking about Herd Immunity. Well, that’s not the simple process it is being touted to be.
Some viruses are like Chicken Pox where once you’ve had it, you aren’t likely to get it again. Now that there is a vaccine, fewer people get it the first time, apparently because there may be less of it to get. Scientists are trying to figure that one out.
Viruses like the Flu, you can get many times.
Other viruses like the bubonic plague wipeout the majority of the population before general immunity begins. Small Pox killed off up to 95 percent of the native populations in North America.
The biggest problem with the Herd Immunity idea in the short run is, again, our inadequate resources. Just testing for the virus takes up medical care resources.
We were barely managing our kncoown illnesses before the new CoVid-19 arrived. If we significantly increased the CoVid-19 cases, by attempting an experiment in Herd Immunity, we would definitely overwhelm our emergency and front line services, resulting in more deaths. And CoVid-19 may not be like Chicken Pox, so lots of people would have died in vain.
And if CoVid-19 does fade away on its own, that doesn’t mean the next one will or that an old one won’t mutate. The plague actually still exists, centuries later!
Now I like conspiracy theories as much as the next person. However, we’ve had pandemic type outbreaks from several places in the world in the past couple of decades. That the current virus was first identified in China doesn’t explain why we weren’t ready for something that we have known was coming for over 30 years.
So I keep coming back to our inadequate illness response system, world-wide. How did it get this way and is it going to remain inadequate?
And I’m not looking to blame anyone at this point. There is lots of blame to go around, but who cares? I’m looking for solutions so that we are ready, truly ready next time.
We need dedicated illness response resources to get us through the long haul. So let’s get started.