Raise hope as vaccine, cold reality dawns: Covid-19 is possible to stay here

The vaccination campaign promises to curb Kovid-19, but governments and businesses are increasingly recognizing that epidemiologists have long warned: the pathogen will circulate for years, or decades, to society as Kovid-19 Does a lot to co-exist with. Along with other endemic diseases like flu, measles and HIV.

The ease with which coronaviruses spread is the emergence of new strains and poor access to vaccines in large parts of the world, with Kovid-19 moving from an epidemic disease to an endemic individual, meaning permanent modifications to personal and social behavior. Is, epidemiologists say.

Thomas Frieden, former director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said, “Going through five stages of grief, we need to get to the stage of acknowledging that our lives are not the same.” “I don’t think the world has really absorbed the fact that these are long-term changes.”

Endemic covid-19 does not necessarily mean that coronovirus restrictions continue, infectious-pathologists said, largely because vaccines are so effective in preventing serious illness and preventing hospitalizations and deaths. Hospitalization declined by 30% after vaccinating a third of its population in Israel. Deaths there are expected to decrease in the coming weeks.

But some organizations are planning a long-term future in which prevention methods such as masking, good ventilation and testing continue in some form. Meanwhile, a new and potentially lucrative Kovid-19 industry is rapidly emerging, as businesses invest in goods and services such as air-quality monitoring, filters, diagnostic kits, and new treatments.

During a Kovid-19 outbreak in Peru last week, a man slept outside to save a spot for a limited number of oxygen-tank refills.


Sebastian Castaneda / Reuters

According to estimates from manufacturers such as Quest Diagnostics of New Jersey, the number of globally-produced gene-detecting PCR tests is expected to rise this year, before millions of people receive a swab to attend music, basketball games or family functions. would be required.

A spokesman for South Korea’s SD Biosensor, Inc., which is accelerating the production of zone-home diagnostic kits, said, “We think it will last for years or become eternal, such as the flu.” The leading drug manufacturers — Switzerland’s Novartis International AG and Eli Lilly and Company — have invested in potential Kovid-19 therapies. More than 300 such products are currently under development.

Airlines such as Lufthansa are restructuring to focus on short-haul flights within Europe, and away from Pacific countries that have said they will keep the borders closed for at least this year. Some airports have plans for a new vaccine passport system to allow vaccinated travelers to travel. Restaurants are investing in more takeout and delivery offerings. Meatpacking plants from Canada to Europe are purchasing robotic weapons to reduce the risk of an outbreak by reducing the number of workers on assembly lines.

Diseases are considered endemic when they are constantly present but manageable like the flu. The extent of prevalence varies by disease and location, epidemiologists say. Rabies, malaria, HIV, and zika are all anemic infectious diseases, but their prevalence and human toll vary globally.

John Muscola, director of the Vaccine Research Center at the National Institutes of Health, said that soon after countries failed to transmit coronovirus and transmission globally, “it was clear to most virologists that the virus would become endomic.” “When a virus spreads so easily between humans and populations [lacks immunity], It will spread anywhere it is an opportunity to spread. It is like a leak in a dam. “

Immunologists now hope that vaccines will prevent transmission, a finding that will significantly reduce the spread of the virus. An Oxford University study published last week found that giving the AstraZeneca vaccine to people could reduce their chances of developing the disease.

On Saturday, a woman received a Kovid-19 vaccine from a member of the National Guard at a mass vaccination site in Maryland.


Sara Silbiger / Getty Images

Nevertheless, there are vast pockets of human populations that will remain beyond the reach of a vaccine for the future, giving the virus plenty of space to continue spreading.

No vaccine is currently authorized for young children, and supply issues will leave most of the developing world without a shot until next year at the earliest. Meanwhile, Europe has seen a high rate of vaccine refusal: less than half of French people were willing to take a shot when asked in a recent YouGov poll.

As scientists develop new treatments, Kovid-19 “will become an infection we can live with”, said Rachel Bender Ignacio, an infectious disease specialist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. As such, she said, it would be important to develop treatments for persistent debilitating symptoms that many patients struggle with for months after becoming ill, such as memory fog, smell and loss of digestion, and heart problems.

Some countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, have counted their average daily case in the low single digits, but neither has ever experienced the heaviest outbreaks that the US and Europe continue to see, and both island countries have reported virus slip in their Have seen before strict restrictions. .

“I don’t believe we should start eradicating or eradicating this virus as a bar to success,” said Mike Ryan, executive director of emergency programs for the World Health Organization. “We have to get to the point where we are under the control of the virus, the virus is not under our control.”

Tampa, Fla., Convention Center on the first day of Super Bowl LV; Demand for the Kovid-19 tests is expected to explode as millions of people become inundated before sporting, cultural and family events.


Shannon Stapleton / Reuters

In modern history, only one human virus has been completely wiped out: smallpox. While the disease only infects people, the novel coronavirus can spread among small mammals such as mink, then, less effectively, back into humans, turning the world’s fur farms into potential reservoirs for the virus.

In addition, millions of Kovid-19 cases have given the virus ample opportunity to improve its ability to infect other mammals, said Sean Whelan, a virologist at the University of Washington in St. Louis. The mutation present in the variance of South Africa and Britain gave the pathogen the ability to infect mice, he said.

Diseases that spread from people who do not show symptoms – often in the case of coronovirus – are particularly difficult to eradicate. The multibillion-dollar global efforts decisions have not eradicated another such disease, polio, which was removed from the US in the 1970s, only removed from Europe in 2002 and still present in Afghanistan and Pakistan is.

Respiratory viruses such as novel coronoviruses are at risk of becoming endemic because they can usually communicate through benign acts, such as inhalation and talking, and may be particularly good in infected cells. They include OC43, a coronavirus that researchers now believe was the cause of the 1890 Russian flu, an epidemic that killed one million. That virus — still present in the population — is responsible for many common colds, although it is less likely to be viral because people have developed immunity.

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Mutations in novel coronovirus variants have made it better at infecting human cells or developing certain antibodies, raising concerns that existing vaccines may be less effective. Scientists say that monitoring new variants will be important for long-term programs. Understanding their characteristics will help determine if the shots need to be updated periodically, as they are for the flu.

Vaccination will be important when the epidemic subsides and Kovid-19 is endemic.

“People think that when a virus becomes endemic, it becomes severe and it’s not as severe,” said Angela Rasmussen, a virologist at the Center for Global Health Science and Security at Georgetown University. The misconception stems from the fact that viruses typically develop to maximize the number of people they infect before killing them.

But most people avoid Kovid-19, so “there is not much pressure for this virus to decay more because it is already spreading and looking for new hosts and new opportunities to replicate before its host becomes ill.” Is, “he said. “It’s going well.”

write to Daniela Hernández at [email protected] and Drew Hinsav at [email protected]

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