The 1918 flu didn’t nearly wipe out civilization. It was lethal and circled the globe, but of the people who got sick, 1 in 5 died by the highest of all estimates. 20% mortality is high, but a long way from being something that wipes out the earth. The big shocker for that flu was that it killed healthy young people. Of course, you have to keep in mind that “healthy young people” in 1918 could mean something totally different to today. That healthy person could easily have underlying issues that made them more susceptible. Medical care then was nowhere close to what it is now, and sanitation and understanding of how the virus was spread was sorely lacking. Fun fact, you know how in old westerns they would show spittoons? It was actually the 1918 flu that ended that practice, people realized it was unsanitary and causing the illness to spread.
I am all for being prepared, and its the smart thing to do. However, the Surgeon General’s suggestion about masks is not wrong. They are pointless. Doctors wear a mask. While wearing a mask, they also wear layered clothes, gloves, and other forms of protection. The idiot wearing a mask will probably walk up and shake hands with a sick person who didn’t know they were a carrier, then rub their eye. Or eat later without washing their hands. I will say this, the Surgeon General outright lied on tv. He said they have not had anyone who has recovered from the virus get sick again. Not true, there was a woman in Japan who was sick, got better and was discharged, and then tested positive a 2nd time.
This thing is a form of flu. It can live on surfaces for 9 days. It does not just spread from direct contact, it spreads in the air, direct contact and for all we know, can travel by animals. It can take over a week for a person to become symptomatic, and even then, the early symptoms mimic the common cold. How many people go to the doctor for a cold? We also know, just because a person is exposed, doesn’t mean they will get sick. The person who was exposed, and didn’t get sick, is still a carrier. It can be on their skin, clothes, etc. They are still transmitting the disease, and they will never know it.
I work in a bank, and our bank is trying to take steps to “combat” the virus by cancelling meetings and handing out wipes. Keep in mind, on a daily basis, we handle probably the dirtiest surfaces that come in contact with everyone. Cash. Unless we are willing to shut down branches, (we aren’t) the idea that handing out anti-bacterial wipes and hand sanitizer is going to stop us from getting sick is beyond wishful thinking.
As has already been stated, while this coronavirus is lethal, its killing people who are immuno-compromised either due to age or health. That is scary, but the mortality rate is 2%. The death outbreaks are happening in optimal virus hunting grounds, like that nursing home in Washington. Here’s the real truth though. For the 3400 people who died from Coronavirus, there have been over 18,000 killed this year by regular flu. We don’t do anything different in day to day life for flu. Its a fact of life, and its also far more dangerous and lethal. Coronavirus is something thats existed since well before this year, it just happened to become a really big story due to the outbreak conditions in China.
The way I see it, this virus is going to spread uncontrollably. Just like the flu does. You and I will be exposed, directly affected or know people who are directly affected by it. I already had a close call, 2 people who were exposed to the virus worked in a building that wife’s co-worker’s daughter worked in. My wife’s co-worker watches the daughter’s kids. Meaning, the daughter could be exposed, pass it to her kids, who pass it to my wife’s co-worker, who passes it to her office including my wife, and then me to my kid, my kid to his school, and everyone I have contact with at my job on a daily basis. Thats how fast it would happen, and it could be a week before anyone actually shows any symptoms to even know they were sick, and during that week I send boxes to different banks and employees and now all of them are exposed and spreading it. It turns out, the 2 employees have tested negative, so crisis averted. (for now). I am very worried about someone like my Grandpa, who is 92 and in poor health. Im worried about my Dad, who is 70 and in iffy health. Im worried about my buddy with a 2 month old. I know its only time before someone in a city with them living in it turns up sick, and then its up to nature vs modern health care.