World

If Ebola Weren't Stopped, It Could've Killed a Billion People. Now Here's Covid.

Showing support to healthcare workers, and providing some facts that any virus spread can be stopped, slower than slow.

International cooperation and coordination especially between healthcare workers and other medical staff was key to going back to normalcy. O.I. for The Subic Bay Times
Contributor
September 20, 2020


Risky article, but, only a few years ago, when world statisticians and physicians said that they went to Liberia to fight Ebola. "If it weren't stopped, it could easily spread to the rest of the world and kill a billion people, causing more harm than any known pandemic in world history," this was written by the late Swedish physician, Hans Rosling. Although, unlike Ebola that can only be transmitted when people come into contact with infected blood or body fluids, the Coronavirus disease of 2019 (Covid-19) can easily be transmitted through close contact or aerosol spread. Ebola, back then, was an international concern when the World Health Organization (W.H.O.) declared the deteriorating situation in West Africa a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (P.H.E.I.C.), which is designated only for events with a risk of potential international spread or that require a coordinated international response. The Ebola virus spread was slow unlike the new or novel Coronavirus (nCov) - which later designated as Covid-19 - happened and was spread worldwide in a matter of weeks. As of mid-September, Covid-19 has infected more than 30 million people, and killed nearly 1 million. Nevertheless, slow or fast spread, what does a country need to fight Covid-19? We all have to feel grateful to civil servants, police officers, firefighters, military, accountants, receptionists and of course, healthcare workers, medical frontliners, physicians, researchers. Every virus worldwide "was won prosaically and undramatically by local health workers who created public health campaigns who risked their lives to treat dying patients and did the cumbersome, dangerous and delicate work of finding and isolating all the people who had been in contact with them. Rarely ever mentioned before, medical frontliners. They were the key people who make the world survive and make it a better place. Despite their work, national governments such as in the Philippines, show little to no support. In mid-2020, as the first modern pandemic wreaked havoc, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte told nurses and other healthcare workers that if they want higher pay, they should join the police force. Economic endeavours were chosen. Back in the first country mentioned, Liberia in June 2016 was first declared fully Ebola-free. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "engaging local leaders in prevention programs and messaging, along with careful policy implementation at the national and global level, helped to eventually contain the spread of the virus and put an end to this outbreak." What's the point? That is, every virus spread, epidemics or pandemics can be stopped. That is, we have to support those who are on the frontlines of this battle. Just like Ebola, there are waves as you've heard before. And to be able to help curb the rise of cases, every person has their own responsibilities. You know that already. It is true that a country cannot function without a government. But the government cannot solve every problem. Cooperation with every person is key to normalcy. It's been months, and cases continue to rise. But, in fact, the global progress with the fight against Covid-19 already became better. Don't confuse slow change with no change. Researchers and pharmaceutical companies continue to develop a vaccine. As of mid-2020, most companies who are developing an effective vaccine for Covid-19 are in their last stages. The current status of the Covid-19 pandemic appears to be constant just because changes are happening slowly. With the help of healthcare workers and international health cooperation, the world is getting better. This is not the new normal. We're just getting back to the normal, slowly. There is progress.


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