It has been almost two years since the emergence and spread of the novel coronavirus have caused widespread social disruption. So you may be wondering, how long will this continue? When will the pandemic end? Will the Covid pandemic become endemic?
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, public health specialists and epidemiologists have been utilizing predictive mathematical models to determine the future to control the spread of the virus. Just this January, Nature Portfolio, a research community publishing its most significant discoveries, surveyed more than 100 immunologists, infectious-disease researchers, and virologists working on the coronavirus whether the disease could be eradicated. And the result? Almost 90% said that the coronavirus would become endemic.
That means it will continue to circulate in the global population for years to come, just like Influenza, an endemic respiratory illness.
Yes, many scientists think that Covid will be a permanent part of human existence. But what does it mean for the people?
Will the endemic Covid be as severe or deadly?
To save you from stress, I will go straight to the point: No, Covid likely will not be as severe, researchers say.
If Covid remains continuously spreading, it likely will not be as severe. Usually, a person develops a stronger immune response with each subsequent infection. And as people continue to get vaccinated, infection levels will come down.
However, people with underlying conditions will still fare poorly from Covid, just like how the cold or flu can become a severe illness and can lead to death in certain populations.
So, how could the endemic Covid affect daily life?
If the Covid pandemic becomes endemic, we can say that it is another virus that we will have to live with — minus the social distancing and mask-wearing.
Researchers say that testing will also likely become a normal part of our lives, with diagnostic tests becoming cheaper and more accessible.
Since the Covid is expected to stay, we have to determine if the symptoms we are having are that of the flu, coronavirus, or something else. And we still have to be prepared to handle confirmed Covid cases to mitigate the spread. It is also very important to strengthen your lungs and immune system so your body can combat viruses and diseases.
Protecting yourself and others around you is easier when you know the facts and take appropriate precautions. To prevent the spread of Covid, always:
- Clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Maintain a safe distance from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
- Wear a mask when physical distancing is not possible.
- Cover your nose and mouth with your bent elbow or a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
- Stay home if you feel unwell.
- Seek medical attention if you have a fever, cough, and difficulty breathing.
Following the safety tips provided by your local health authority can prepare you when the Covid pandemic becomes endemic.
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