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Wuhan China Coronavirus aka COVID-19: Simple Things that Everyone Can Do to Help Yourself and to Slow Transmission

See yesterday’s post Wuhan China Coronavirus aka COVID-19 and N100/P100/N95 Particulate Respirator Masks.

COVID-19 is now unstoppable, the infection rate being a total farce since very few people are tested. It now seems highly probable that most of the USA will be infected and it is quite possible to envision half a million deaths, probably mostly elderly, as health facilities are overwhelmed. That is not hyperbole, it is simple math.

My understanding is a growth rate of 2^(N/6) where N is the number of days. In other words, 1000 infected people will become 4 million within 72 days. Six days later, 8 million, them 16 million 8 days after that, and so on.

NYC and its subway system and any similar systems seem like extremely effective transmission vectors sure to infect most of NYC in short order. All that is needed are a few infected people on the subway each day, which will exponentially infect the ridership.

If only 1% of those infected need acute medical care, then 1.5 million people are at risk (150 million infected X 1%). That figure might be high (how many are at high risk, like elderly?). Or it might be worse—no one knows yet.

The death rate as yet is an invalid number, since no one knows how many people were infected but had mild symptoms.

Unnecessary deaths will occur when neither beds nor respirators nor medical supplies nor personnel to treat them are available, and that could happen within a month unless the rate of transmission is slowed. Not stopped (impossible), but slowed.

Thus, to avoid overwhelming the health care system, it is critical to slow the spread of COVID-19, so do your part for yourself and others. By slowing the spread, the chances of care being available for those in need are improved, and lives will be saved.

How you can do your part

Social

Avoid contact with others to the maximum extent possible. This is already happening in widespread ways via organizations (schools, etc). Unfortunately, my guess is that people will still socialize with friends and such. STOP SOCIALIZING.

Boost your immune system

  • Get at least 2 hours of extra rest and sleep each night.
  • Get light exercise every day, preferably in a nature setting (proven to improve health).
  • Get half an hour of sunlight each day without sunscreen.
  • Skip the junk food and eat healthy food. Stocking up on Cheetos is self defeating.
  • I cannot vouch for this, but one reader recommends Herbal Antivirals: Natural Remedies for Emerging & Resistant Viral Infections.

Prevention

  • Gargle with warm salt waters 3X a day, as salty as it can take ( very warm but not uncomfortable). Warmth and salt help damage at least some viruses.
  • Stay hydrated, and avoid electrolyte depletion with a product like Tailwind.
  • Get a flu (influenza) shot if you have not already done so—the last thing you need is confusing the flu with COVID-19, or having both at the same time.

Avoidance

  • Wear disposable vinyl gloves anywhere you touch things that others may have touched, but keep in mind that like fingers, they can be contaminated so touching your face or body remains an issue.
  • Learn how to wash your hands properly with soap and water. I would say that 1% of people know how to wash hands properly. Having had a daughter in the NICU for 6 weeks 22 years ago, I know how to do so, but I know from observation that hardly anyone does.
  • Wear an N100 (or P100) or N95 particulate respirator in public, properly fitted and sealed. You might still be able to get these at hardware stores in some areas. P100 is just N100 with filtration for oils also.
  • Hand sanitizer is good (and sold out!) but not a panacea and must cover the entire front and back of the hand and under the fingertips and must remain moist long enough.
  • Do not touch your nose or face with your hands or fingers. Since this is often done without awareness, any mask-like thing that prevents contact has value, even if it is totally ineffective against airborne transmission.

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