What have we learned so far? The numbers are not clear, nor are the consequences. Moreover, there is a lot of distorted information, some can even be called fake. Let me tell you what I took from all that.
- The most important problem that the new virus is causing is the exceeding number of cases of pneumonia and ARDS caused by fluid in the lungs. This seems to be a lot worse than in the ordinary flu or older Coronaviruses, probably because we are not yet immune. The virus is also causing other damages to your body, but lung problems are the most common ones. While the chances to need oxygen or ventilation are not known precisely yet and will depend on your age, the situation in the hospitals of the affected regions speaks a clear language. We need to concentrate on medical care and break the chains of infection to slow down the development of the disease!
- The mortality seems to be high only in people of old age, especially those that are weakened by other diseases. We might observe that the overall mortality does not rise much at all. The number of deaths by COVID19 published so far all over the world supports this view. The conclusion is to protect the elderly as much as we can to spare them a painful and sudden death requiring intense medical care. We do that, again, by reducing social contact and keeping the number of infected people at any time as low as possible. By the way, hygiene and care should have been observed in contact with elderly people at all times.
- The current economy is based on the production of consumer articles and marketing. Many countries have reduced or have been forced to reduce state activities that do not lead to direct profit, such as health care and education. This economy is not fit for any crisis that needs social solidarity. Since profit and interest are the driving forces and the main means of wealth distribution each recession throws us into a deep crisis. Politicians see that now and try to stabilize the situation. Essentially, this is a takeover and a regulation of the industry by financial means, which can be summed up as printing money. Even the idea of state control of key industries is revived. We should learn from that crisis that there must be a balance between the private sector of the economy and social needs covered by the state at all times. If that is out of balance, we are not flexible enough to fight a crisis like this one.
Keep healthy and stay at home for a while!