The Coronavirus: What We Need To Fear The Most Is Not What You Might Think
Right now, we are being bombarded with information about the coronavirus and it's current and future impact on our communities and the entire world. It's so hard to read and sift through all of the information to feel well informed. Even if you still think this is being blown out of proportion and sensationalized, you must admit that keeping an open mind is better that shutting yourself off and sitting in denial of what is and might be happening.
Because I myself am overwhelmed and confused, I have tried to find information that speaks in laymen's terms. Things that are easier to understand and apply to my everyday. These are some things I have found.
The first is from an article written my a doctor in Toronto, Canada. I saw it on my friend Crystal's FB page. It speaks volumes about how we all behave, and more importantly should, behave in a crisis.
The other article is from Newsweek written by a doctor on the front lines of the coronavirus in Italy. At this time, the county is shut down and fighting the virus the best they can. She writes of the mistakes that Italy made in it's anticipation and preparation of the virus threat, where they are now in their fight and her heartfelt warning to the United States. She asks us to learn from Italy, to not make the same mistakes and to be more proactive and aggressive in our containment of the virus. She writes -
I'm a doctor in a major hospital in Western Europe. Watching you Americans (and you, Brits) in these still-early days of the coronavirus pandemic is like watching a familiar horror movie, where the protagonists, yet again, split into pairs or decide to take a tour of a dark basement.
She goes on to say,
But why the urgency, if most people survive?
Here's why: Fatality is the wrong yardstick. Catching the virus can mess up your life in many, many more ways than just straight-up killing you. "We are all young"—okay. "Even if we get the bug, we will survive"—fantastic. How about needing four months of physical therapy before you even feel human again. Or getting scar tissue in your lungs and having your activity level restricted for the rest of your life. Not to mention having every chance of catching another bug in hospital, while you're being treated or waiting to get checked with an immune system distracted even by the false alarm of an ordinary flu. No travel for leisure or business is worth this risk.
Now, odds are, you might catch coronavirus and might not even get symptoms. Great. Good for you. Very bad for everyone else, from your own grandparents to the random older person who got on the subway train a stop or two after you got off. You're fine, you're barely even sneezing or coughing, but you're walking around and you kill a couple of old ladies without even knowing it. Is that fair? You tell me.
It's the civic and moral duty of every person, everywhere, to take part in the global effort to reduce this threat to humanity. To postpone any movement or travel that are not vitally essential, and to spread the disease as little as possible. Have your fun in June, July and August when this—hopefully—is over. Stay safe. Good luck.
So in other words, do what you need to do to be safe, keep those you love and in your home safe and all you come in contact with, safe. We need to be there for each other. Don't go to the grocery store and hoard all of the supplies for yourself. We all need to eat, wipe, clean and survive. Take what you need and leave the rest for others. And, stay home if you are sick. Others, will be able to fill in for you.
The cancellations, postponements, social distancing and quarantines are to help keep the virus from spreading. This graphic from the University of Michigan and the CDC makes this very clear.
Why NOT keep more people from getting sick and save more lives. YES, these are inconvenient and a pain in the butt, but necessary. Stop complaining about events, schools and businesses being better safe than sorry. When has that ever been a bad thing? Never.
In times of crisis and fear, we NEED to stick together. We are all connected. In times like these, we realize that more than ever. Take care of one another. It's time to really look at yourself and your recent actions. What did you teach your kids about sharing, love and empathy for your fellow human beings while you where stocking up on supplies. How are you coming across at home when you are discussing the information provided about the virus? Did you go to work, knowing you were sick? Putting others in harms way? Whether it's a strain of the flu, the coronavirus or some other infections disease, take care of yourself and keep yourself form infecting others. Teach your kids it's ok to take a day off if you are sick. The world will go on until you get better and can return healthy. If you are a business owner who frowns upon sick days because you feel it will cost you money or it's inconvenient, shame on you. Change your work environment, it will make you more money in the long run. Compassion and understanding are key.
The children in your family are watching and listening. If we are to raise a generation better than ourselves, more caring, compassionate, smarter, open minded, empathetic and loving, it starts today. Not just in the good times. What is to be learned from those? It's in crisis that we all need to be the best version of ourselves. However difficult it may be, you must do it. Whether is a natural disaster like the recent deadly and devastating tornadoes in Nashville, TN or the worldwide virus that is threatening our health, be the light in the darkness of fear and despair.
This will not be the last time we are in a global crisis. We must learn from each one. We must ask better, prepare better, do better and be better. When the crisis is over, life will go on. Let's all move forward from this better that we entered into it.
I also found these very clear and easy to understand info graphics from the CDC website.
Print these here.
Other valuable checklists from the CDC can be found here.