New Covid-19 clusters around the world cause fear of the second wave

by Jun 28, 2020Coronavirus, World0 comments

A meat processing plant in Germany. A church in Seoul. A squat and a hospital in Italy. A wholesale market in Beijing. All of them have experienced clusters of infections after national authorities declared the disease suppressed in their country and launched a slow return to normal life.

Months after the pandemic, fear of the second wave of infections now hangs over countries that have managed to end the disease, primarily through financially and socially painful blockades.

An incubation period of up to two weeks, the fact that some infected people can spread the disease before symptoms show and others remain asymptomatic… all of this helps the virus to spread undetected before outbreaks. South Korea caught international attention last week when its disease control authorities were the first in the world to announce that the country had entered a second wave, centered in the capital and apparently triggered by meetings during a May holiday.

In some parts of the Global South, mass testing, tracing, and isolation will not be possible

Linda Bauld, professor of public health
The term “second wave” does not have an agreed scientific definition. It can mean anything from localized spikes in infection to a full-blown national crisis, and some experts avoid it for this reason. The World Health Organization avoided using it to describe the state of South Korea when asked at a press conference.

There is more consensus on prevention and how to manage new outbreaks using rapidly refined approaches in recent months to find infected people and prevent them from spreading the disease.

“In the absence of an effective vaccine or medication, it’s about the data. We need to know where the cases are,” said Linda Bauld, a professor of public health at the University of Edinburgh. “Identify who has the disease: testing, tracing, and isolation.”

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With these measures, a group of local infections does not inevitably lead to a full-blown national outbreak if it is identified and contained quickly enough.

Preventive measures also help limit the speed with which any new group can spread, said Keith Neal, professor emeritus of infectious disease epidemiology at the University of Nottingham. He encouraged people to think that there was not a single magic bullet, but “every little help,” adding: “If you reduce each risk by 10% or 20%, overall you have a great reduction. So meet as few people as possible and distance when you do, wear masks, work from home. ”

However, these approaches to fending off a second wave only work in countries that have been able to contain the virus and have the resources to pay for testing, tracing, and blocking.

In the United States, some states began relaxing locks before the virus had been contained, and weeks after infections peaked they have initially risen again, a grim reminder of how easily the virus can recover a fulcrum. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, warned that it was premature to speak of a second wave, however, because the country had not yet emerged from its first wave.

And in countries like Afghanistan, poverty and war made the virus almost impossible to contain; When staying home means running out of food, even harshly enforced orders are likely to be disobeyed.

“In parts of the global south, mass testing, tracing, and isolation will not be possible,” said Bauld.

That disparity in controls and constant vigilance over a second wave means that travel restrictions are likely to remain until an effective vaccine or cure is discovered.

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A meat processing plant in Germany. A church in Seoul. A squat and a hospital in Italy. A wholesale market in Beijing. All of them have experienced clusters of infections after national authorities declared the disease suppressed in their country and launched a slow return to normal life.

Months after the pandemic, fear of the second wave of infections now hangs over countries that have managed to end the disease, primarily through financially and socially painful blockades.

An incubation period of up to two weeks, the fact that some infected people can spread the disease before symptoms show and others remain asymptomatic… all of this helps the virus to spread undetected before outbreaks. South Korea caught international attention last week when its disease control authorities were the first in the world to announce that the country had entered a second wave, centered in the capital and apparently triggered by meetings during a May holiday.

In some parts of the Global South, mass testing, tracing, and isolation will not be possible

Linda Bauld, professor of public health
The term “second wave” does not have an agreed scientific definition. It can mean anything from localized spikes in infection to a full-blown national crisis, and some experts avoid it for this reason. The World Health Organization avoided using it to describe the state of South Korea when asked at a press conference.

There is more consensus on prevention and how to manage new outbreaks using rapidly refined approaches in recent months to find infected people and prevent them from spreading the disease.

“In the absence of an effective vaccine or medication, it’s about the data. We need to know where the cases are,” said Linda Bauld, a professor of public health at the University of Edinburgh. “Identify who has the disease: testing, tracing, and isolation.”

READ  COVID-19: India is now the 7th worst hit country in the world

With these measures, a group of local infections does not inevitably lead to a full-blown national outbreak if it is identified and contained quickly enough.

Preventive measures also help limit the speed with which any new group can spread, said Keith Neal, professor emeritus of infectious disease epidemiology at the University of Nottingham. He encouraged people to think that there was not a single magic bullet, but “every little help,” adding: “If you reduce each risk by 10% or 20%, overall you have a great reduction. So meet as few people as possible and distance when you do, wear masks, work from home. ”

However, these approaches to fending off a second wave only work in countries that have been able to contain the virus and have the resources to pay for testing, tracing, and blocking.

In the United States, some states began relaxing locks before the virus had been contained, and weeks after infections peaked they have initially risen again, a grim reminder of how easily the virus can recover a fulcrum. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, warned that it was premature to speak of a second wave, however, because the country had not yet emerged from its first wave.

And in countries like Afghanistan, poverty and war made the virus almost impossible to contain; When staying home means running out of food, even harshly enforced orders are likely to be disobeyed.

“In parts of the global south, mass testing, tracing, and isolation will not be possible,” said Bauld.

That disparity in controls and constant vigilance over a second wave means that travel restrictions are likely to remain until an effective vaccine or cure is discovered.

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