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Opinion | Social Distancing May Be Our Best Weapon

Preventing “community spread”

In 1918, health officials from Philadelphia ignored calls for social distancing and allowed a World War I victory parade to proceed. Within three days, people were sick. Within six weeks, 12,000 were dead.

The 1918 influenza had a fatality rate of about 2,5 percent, compared to the 3,4 percent of the new virus. The best way to prevent the virus from spreading is to keep people apart.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Opinion | Social Distancing May Be Our Best Weapon

Opinion | Social Distancing May Be Our Best Weapon

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/11/opinion/coronavirus-prevention-distancing.html

nytimes.com

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Key Ideas

Close contact

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the new virus can spread between people who are in close contact with one another (within about six feet).

We can protect ourselves by slowing the spread of the disease.

Ineffective methods

Travel bans are proving to be too late. Since the virus can incubate for 14 days, carriers can spread it before they even know they have it.
Protective gear such as masks only works if they are used correctly.
It doesn't help to cover our hands if those hands are still touching infected surfaces before touching our eyes, nose, or mouth.

Preventing “community spread”

In 1918, health officials from Philadelphia ignored calls for social distancing and allowed a World War I victory parade to proceed. Within three days, people were sick. Within six weeks, 12,000 were dead.

The 1918 influenza had a fatality rate of about 2,5 percent, compared to the 3,4 percent of the new virus. The best way to prevent the virus from spreading is to keep people apart.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Outbreak terms

  • Endemic is a disease that regularly infects humans, like the flu.
  • Pandemic is a worldwide spread of a new disease. 
  • Epidemic

Public health measures

  • Social distancing is a slew of tactics meant to keep people at a six feet distance from each other to keep droplets from an infected person's nose or mouth from landing on another person.
  • Quarantine is restricting the movement of, or isolating, people who might have been exposed to an infection but who aren't sick.
  • Isolation is separating people with confirmed or probable infections from other healthy people.
  • Lockdown is a term used by public health officials or lawyers to refer to anything from mandatory geographic quarantine to non-mandatory recommendations to shelter in place, to anything in between.
  • Cordon sanitaire is the restriction of movement in and out of a region or city.
  • Shelter in place is an order requesting people to stay at home, except for trips to the grocery store, pharmacies, and other essential errands.

Medical equipment

  • A ventilator is a machine that assists a patient in breathing when they have trouble breathing on their own.
  • PPE (Personal protective equipment), such as masks, gloves, face shields, and other gear that keeps health care workers from catching an infection.
  • A respirator is a face mask that seals around the mouth and filters out particles from the air before they are breathed in.
  • Surgical mask or face mask are loose-fitting masks that don't filter out all the particles but stop a wearer from spreading droplets of contagion when they sneeze or cough.

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Wearing Masks

Wearing Masks

Due to the pandemic scare, many countries have enforced measures like social distancing, closure of transport options to decrease mobility and stay-at-home orders. These policies come in the shape ...

WHO Policy On Masks

The Official WHO policy until recently on masks was that they are to be worn by those who are sick and those who are taking care of the sick (doctors and nurses) or are at potential hazardous zones (like airports).

Experts suggest that a mask is not reliable protection while stressing on frequent hand washing.

Cultural Complexity

  • In Asian countries, we now see masks been worn by the general public and they are seen as safer and more considerate. These are the same countries where there have been serious outbreaks before and whose memories are still fresh and painful in the people.
  • The visibility of the mask acts as a visual reminder for everyone around, a sort of behavioral nudge. A mask makes us and others more aware of the situation. In crowded areas (like the Subway), if everyone is wearing a mask, the risk of transmission is lower.

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    Protection By Face Masks

    Due to the Wuhan virus spreading across the world, the use of face masks might seem a good means of protection.

    The N95 mask, which is a heavy-duty mask offers better protection (95% of air...

    Protect Yourself Wisely

    • Cloth masks, which are reusable and washable, offer no real protection while being potentially harmful in case there is any moisture retention or dirt in them due to their being reused.
    • It is a good practice to wear a mask all the time, especially if you have any respiratory illness.
    • It is advisable to be careful while removing your mask, as a mere touch of your hands on the front of the mask can contaminate it.
    • It is also advisable not to touch your face or nose too much.
    • Constantly and frequently wash your hands, all year round, and get a flu shot, as it is flu season. While a flu shot is not a protection against the virus, it is still advisable to get one.