With a 2-3% mortality rate, a lot of people have not taken COVID19 seriously. At first, the virus seemed to focus on elderly (65+), but it has since evolved and now anyone could be infected and die from it. Many people have recovered, yes, but it’s a gamble since medical staff have been overwhelmed with the amount of people needing care. With states bidding against each other for supplies, medical staff nation-wide has been forced to decide which patient gets help and supplies and who doesn’t have a chance to survive. This is a terrible decision to have to make; after all, they got into medicine to help people live, not let decide they die simply because their office ran out of supplies.
Speaking of supplies, I couldn’t talk about this pandemic, and not include the response from citizens. The populous have lost their minds. Not only with people hoarding, but worse, others trying to make a mint off the panic. For example, many stories of people buying pallets of toilet paper, and then selling each roll for $5 or packages of TP for up to $100. It doesn’t stop at TP; but tissue paper, hand sanitizer, laundry supplies, and anything else that people use regularly. This is not limited to the US; in Australia, there were talks about printing blank pages in the newspaper for people to use because supply was so low. Personally, I think this is an unspeakable evil action of greed; history will show, plenty of people think otherwise.
When our household got down to the last 3 rolls, we had to find more. First, I confidently went online to get more, but found there was none to buy; seriously, nothing online until the next month. We went out to stores across the whole town and found nothing on shelves; we even went Walmart, Home Depot, Lowes, and then grocery stores and heard even gas stations have been cleared out. I met other shoppers looking for the same necessity all over. I had conversations with those people about how crazy “that we had to search for TP” and talked about eventually finding other solutions; for example, using washcloths for TP much like a reusable diaper. Take a moment to appreciate what it takes for complete strangers to talk to another about using a warm washcloth at TP and reuse it, and you will understand the desperation we were all in. To have one of these conversations is stranger than reality, but it happened in multiple stores, with multiple strangers; surreal to say the least.
The tables have turns on the hoarders. Now that people have found a stable supply of such necessities, these hoarders are trying to return the “in demand” items, only to find out the stores will not allow returns on hoarded items. Perfect.
Traveling for pleasure is non-existent, even around our native countries, and I say native countries because again, a “stay home” memorandum is happening across the world. In my state, governors have been quarantining anyone for 14 days if they cross state lines to limit spread of the virus. The only people allowed to operate as normal are called “essential workers”. People are conflicted about if they are essential workers; they can work and get normal pay, but many are in direct contact with the public and potential infection. Obviously medical staff are essential, but they are now strapped for basic equipment like n39 masks, enough beds for patients, and enough time to get to patients before they die. To date (4/7/2020) 82,133 people have died from COVID19 and it’s expected to spike over the next 2 weeks.
The US was one of the later areas to be affected by the virus, and our government was classic to be slow with any preventive action, even though they watch Wuhan closely, as is said by military personnel. The government finally released a website and sent out information cards (see below) to help get people on the same page with an action to help prevent the spread. Each state has been able to suggest to its residents what to do; many have gotten on-board with the “stay home” order to try to minimize the spread. Some states have been much slower, Florida, I’m looking at you. Every couple weeks we get updates what to do.
This is the first time I’ve seen the whole country or world respond to anything as a whole unit. Global warming that is also scientifically supported, people just laugh at. However, when it comes to COVID19, people are listening to the scientists, aka “smart people”, on what we should be doing to prevent it. Perhaps, this is what we needed to get people on board to listen to people they should have been listening to the whole time.
A plus you ask? The world has experienced the least amount of pollution in history, there are countries that have seen the sky a color they have never seen before (blue, actually clear blue), and the masses are taking science seriously. For now, our state is still on a “stay home” order until late April. We shall see what happens in that time. Until this is all over, be safe, and be courteous of your fellow human beings.