Origins of the virus:
While there are an abundance of conspiracy theories that suggest, we could have predicted a global pandemic such as Covid-19. There is also scientific evidence for such a view.
With a paper published in 2007 that described the combination of consumption of horseshoe bats in Southern China, and the presence of SARS-CoV-like viruses in the area as a ‘time bomb.’ (source) One that sadly has now exploded.
Covid-19 is contagious and airborne. Originall it was thought that it spread only via the droplets created when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The thinking was that these droplets land on surfaces and are transferred to others who touch them. People then become infected with the virus when touching their hands to their face or mouth. Of course, that meant that the first line of defense in fighting Covid-19 was thoroughly wash your hands with soap or hand sanitizer.
There is a lot of confusion between the terms lockdown, self-isolation, and self-quarantine right now. Lockdown is the state of emergency that governments implement within a country or geographical area. The idea is to limit the movements of people within that area, therefore slowing the spread of the virus.
In practical terms in the UK, this means people should not leave their homes unless absolutely necessary. That means visiting friends or family members that live outside of their residence is not allowed. It also means that wherever possible, you should work from home and avoid being in public.
The only valid exceptions to these rules include going outside for exercise, to get essential food or medical supplies, or to minister to the vulnerable. All of which should be minimised as much as possible.
In fact, when engaged in such exceptions, you should also adhere to social distancing rules. That is to stay at least 2 meters away from another person at any time.
Perhaps the most significant confusion is between self-isolation and self-quarantine.
However, as this post suggests, self-isolation (currently 12 weeks is recommended) is designed for those that are already sick.
That is those that have underlying health conditions and are vulnerable to the worst effects of the virus. The idea being that by isolating themselves from the rest of society, they significantly reduce their chances of being infected with CoronaVirus.
On the other hand, self-quarantine is designed for those that have been exposed to the Covid-19 virus. With the view of minimizing the risk of passing it on to anyone else. Therefore anyone experiencing Covid -19 symptoms is to stay at home for 7 days from their onset.
Additionally, for those sharing a household with them, the isolation period needs to be 14 days from the onset of the illness. The reason being that this covers the incubation period and will ensure that even if they are asymptomatic will not spread the disease to others.
Self-quarantine is particularly important in homes where persons vulnerable to the worst effects of Covid -19 live. In fact, in such a situation, the advice is to remove at-risk people from the home if possible. Alternatively, isolating the person that is sick and adhering to social distancing for the duration may be used if no other option is available.
Self-quarantine – Impact on individuals
The impact of quarantine, isolation, and the broader restrictions on societal freedoms on individuals is likely to be significant.
One major concern is that of mental health. The problem being the combination of increased anxiety over Covid-19, and the reduction in social interaction, and the positive experiences usually sought outside of the home.
Impact on economies
Concerning the impact of Coronavirus on the economy, there is already a decline in demand for goods (and services). A situation attributed to the lockdown enforced in many locations.
Of course, governments are well aware of this issue, and are currently doing all they can to minimise this situation with bailouts, tax breaks, and other financial reliefs. However, in a world after Corona, the likelihood of a global recession remains high.
Impact on global aviation
One of the industries hardest hit by the corona pandemic is aviation. In fact, in a time where movement is restricted, those facilitating travel will necessarily suffer the most.
The issues the aviation industry face are many and varied. In particular, the short term crisis is that of empty planes. Something that has cut off airlines’ cash flow dead. A situation that has already claimed FlyBe, in Europe.
In the medium term, the issue is the possible reduction in available airports globally. A situation that could be caused if multiple airlines fail and the demand and availability for access to such locations is decreased.
The long term is not free from issues here either. In fact, with such a sustained change in the ability to travel, consumers’ needs, especially in the leisure sector, may be reassessed. Something that could in a post corona world, perhaps irrevocably change the viability of the aviation industry in the future.
Unexpected benefits and advantages
Doom and gloom seem to be the order of the day when it comes to Coronavirus. However, to paraphrase a very wise gentleman, when there is a disaster, we must look for the helpers.
In fact, many people are going above and beyond the call of duty during this crisis. From those working in medical institutions to those keeping school open to cater for the most vulnerable in society. Numerous social media groups are springing up to offer help and support to those in their community as well.
Such social benefits are not the only unexpected advantages to come out of this very dire situation, either. In fact, as you can see from the video below, fewer people in some locations less of a strain on nature and natural resources. Something that bodes well for a post Covid-19 world.
Where will we be by 2021?
The worrying news is that the current coronavirus crisis is predicted to last until Spring 2021. In fact, experts suggest that the virus is unlikely to ever totally disappear.
However, this doesn’t mean that we will have to adapt to a world after Covid-19 pandemic that is in perpetual lockdown. The reason for this is that as global immunity increases, we can expect the severity and extent of the infection to lessen over time.
What will the long term effects be on societies and economies?
While it is difficult to predict the long term effect of the Covid- 19 pandemic, we can suggest some radical changes in several areas are likely.
One of these is likely to be a global recession. While another is the impact, it will have on the aviation industries, especially leisure travel.
Still, another is on the day to day lives of those that have experienced a whole new way of living and working (from home). Such an experience that will shape the needs and expectations of individuals in the future. Perhaps offering a new normal in a world after coronavirus pandemic has subsided?
N.B. This article was not written by Ben Lovegrove. It was written by a ghost writer from Fatjoe.com