On March 22, the Prime Minister addressed the nation, announced the lockdown and laid down the social distancing norms due to Corona Pandemic. A number of blogs were written on ‘social distancing leading to emotional distancing’ and the media was full of the pathetic condition of migrant labour. (Social Distancing leading to Emotional Distancing and Pathetic condition of Indian migrant workers – a first-hand experience)
May be the lockdown was justified at that time. There was a fear of the unknown, there was a panic as Corona became a demon. Most of us thought that millions will die; the Government started adding ICU type facilities even in some hotels, unused buildings and even on open grounds.
As per WHO, on January 3, 2020, a total of 44 patients with Pneumonia of unknown aetiology were reported by the national authorities of China. We must remind ourselves that the basis of lockdown and social distancing with the announcement of Pandemic and implementation of Epidemic Act was the prediction by WHO in the month of March 2020. If no lockdown or social distancing or other preventive measures are taken then nearly 40 million people will be killed worldwide and if all the prevention and lockdown measures are followed even then 20 million people will die worldwide in the next few months. Based on these predictions, it was estimated that in India, if no lockdown or social distancing or other preventive measures are taken, then about 60 lacs will die and if all the WHO guidelines of the lockdown or social distancing are followed then about 24 lacs will be killed due to Covid-19 in the next few months.
There has been much controversy regarding the origin of the Wuhan coronavirus, currently called SARS CoV2. There was even a press report that China was developing this in a laboratory for biological warfare and it accidentally leaked out. After the Second World War, there have been enough articles on NBC (Nuclear Biological and Chemical war fares). Many countries conduct short term courses for their armed forces to know about NBC and are prepared; fortunately, only fictions have been written; there is a quotation attributed to Albert Einstein “I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” It appears that both possibilities, naturally occurring or man-made, are legitimate enough to be debated fully. However, although voices on social media are equally strong from both sides when it comes to written material, there is enough of scientific literature and other forms of writing that were produced to disapprove the “conspiracy theory”. In contrast, not much literature or other forms of writing have been put out to describe or argue for the possibility of this virus being man-made. Even today, the Indian Express reports the US President saying ‘the world body must hold China accountable for its actions related to the outbreak’; while the China President, by contrast, struck a conciliatory tone calling for ‘enhanced cooperation over the pandemic and stressing that China had no intention of fighting either a ‘cold war’ or ‘a hot one’ with any country.
The medical doctors started trying various medicines depending upon the symptoms which went on changing from clotting, to infection in the upper respiratory tract and then to the lower respiratory tract. Antibiotics, Antipyretic, Anti-viral and Antimalarial drugs have been used. New tests were introduced; the probabilities of false positive or false negative were evaluated. (Sterilisation and COVID-19 testing) Ventilators were added. Deaths due to comorbidities were also declared as Corona deaths and the bodies were not handed over to the relatives for cremation/burial. Even at this stage, there is no definite medicine and there is no vaccine. (Immunotherapy by Nature vs Vaccine )
The positive side is that there are a number of Corona designated beds which are vacant; the death rate has come down to 1.6% out of more than 56 Lakhs patients who were declared Covid positive after testing. This death rate includes the patients who really died because they were suffering from other severe illness but were tested positive, in particular the older ones. This rate is not different from the death rate due to other illness like cardiac, blood pressure diabetes etc. It is now strongly argued and accepted by many that Covid-19 is Flu-like illness. A large number of patients (symptomatic and also asymptomatic) declared Covid positive after testing, have recovered in 4/5 days just by drinking milk with turmeric, lemon juice and taking crocin. (COVID 19 is a Flu Like Illness)
The authorities in all countries realize this and are relaxing the lockdown. In India we have additional social problems; to keep the balance between so called Corona deaths and deaths due to hunger, depression and domestic violence. It is heartening to get ‘breaking news’ on my mobile ‘India records major decline in new COVID cases in 24 hrs’.
A very thought provoking and timely article!
Very well written and very true that Covid 19 is a flu like illness. We need to be just careful and take necessary precautions to prevent ourselves from this flu.
It’s so nice and refreshing to read a feel-good article now a days. Am amazed at your usage of medical terminolgy…also it’s very well researched.. What you are saying is so true. The unfortunate ones have suffered the worst fate, but the large majority have recovered. The uncertainty and unpredictability scares everyone. Let’s do what we can. And hoping for such nice good reads in the future…. You don’t fail to surprise me.
Well etiology unknown, forecasts are hunches, Medical opinions are highly differentiated, statistical revelations are not significantly getting substantiated. Prevailing paradox is fear psychosis which results in lower immunity. One has to take this in stride and move on .
Article brings out the ground reality of KOVID 19 Pandemic in India vis vis rest of world. Extended lock down helped India to prepare for medical facilities in a big way. Lifting of lock down is necessary to revive the economy. Public at large need to be more careful than that during lock down at least till vaccine is available.
Excellent summary of all important events. China is a mystery for several decades. We can’t believe anything they say, no matter who is saying. They killed 1000s of buddhist in tibbat and Hon Dalali lama could be saved by a miracle.
The full understanding of the multiple ways in which the COVID-19 virus affects human body is still farther away. Even though a lot more is known now, it is clearly inadequate to effectively deal with all the problems that patients face. At this time best defence is still good face mask & adhering to physical distancing.
Very well compiled writeup,and u seem to have a firm grip on the usage of medical jargon too.
SARS Co2 is a conundrum,which has been cracked partially by the health experts,as the treatment still remains largely elusive.
Some take home messages are:
1- paying attention to keep one’s own immunity robust.
2- relaxing lockdown will certainly boost the development of herd immunity.The elderly with comorbidities should be extra cautious outdoors.
3- the time is ripe to open up the markets to stimulate the ebbing economy.
4- the government should now think of giving more funds to the long neglected health sector.
5- rehabilitation of the migrants should be given priority,as they have taken the hardest hit in this unprecedented times.
6-one has to be mentally positive to avoid breakdown ,which is the harbinger of suicide.
7- wait patiently for the ‘efficacious ‘vaccine to hit the markets.