It is rapidly evolving. Deeply concerning. And the world is in flight or fight mode.
As a Doctor, I am privy to the reality of the effects of coronavirus from a medical perspective, as the hospitals face and prepare for an outbreak unlike what many of us in the experienced or treated in our career.
As the media endlessly broadcast, and there is no shortage of information, the general public is starting to panic in the uncertainty, mixed information and the constant change.
Here are some thoughts on Coronavirus from my sister, a fellow Doctor and an Emergency specialist. Bear in mind that things are constantly changing, and this may not be true in a few days or week’s time.
“As the doctor in charge on the floor of an Emergency Department, I can speak with a small amount of authority on the matter.
Essentially, we don’t know much as things are evolving rapidly.
What we do know is:
The virulence of C19 is a spectrum from minimal symptoms to severe pneumonia. Reassuringly, the mortality rate of healthy people with a severe case of C19, is relatively low. However, there are exceptions to every rule and young and healthy people may die in addition to the vulnerable. Early data suggests 85% will have minimal or mild symptoms, 15% will require hospital admission. A small percentage of those requiring admission will become critically unwell and require intensive care.
The transmission rate is very high, currently thought to be 1:2.5. Therefore, the likelihood of you contracting C19 is high and therefore the likelihood of the vulnerable in our society contracting C19 is high. When an immunosuppressed or elderly person or someone with a lot of co-morbidities gets pneumonia, it can be a terminal event for them. Therefore, the rate of death in these population groups will inevitably be high.
The main treatment at this stage is supportive, for eg Oxygen. Viruses do not respond to antibiotics. The efficacy of antivirals is unknown but we are administering anyway to sick C19 patients.
Unfortunately, our capacity to test for C19 is limited, hence strict parameters on who we actually test: currently travellers and direct contacts of C19 positive people or likely to be positive. Soon, we will be able to clinically diagnose as C19 becomes the “flu” of the season.
The current public health aim is to slow the spread so that our healthcare system can cope with the actual sick C19 patients in addition to the everyday pathology which we struggle to manage as it is.
Reassuringly, as of 19/3/2020, we have tested nearly 40,000 people and have only 307 positives for C19.
Moral of the story is, we have to trust our health authorities as their leadership is the best we’ve got. If they say start to “prep” and close down non-essential services, businesses and gatherings, then we must. If you can do it, begin Social Distancing, bunker down if you can, work from home if you can, self isolate if you’re sick, go to the hospital if you’re sick-sick, practice good cough etiquette and Wash Your Hands properly and regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds!
Call Healthdirect for advice if you develop a fever, cough, sore throat and have been overseas in the last 14 days OR in contact with someone with confirmed or suspected C19. (1800 022 222)
A reliable source of information is the NSW Health website.“
Thank you Dr Davina!
Keep in mind beloved ones:
Prayer can literally turn Coronavirus on its head. The prophetic words about C19 are so exciting and comforting.
As Christians, we must believe the best. Pray and intercede. Believe and trust in our Father. And be the voice of hope, the spirit of peace and the heart of generosity.
If you need to isolate, isolate physically, but not spiritually. Keep in contact with friends and family. Let’s act like a Christian community, even if from a distance.
Simultaneously, we must honour and listen to the advice of our health experts and government. Prepare as necessary, minimise contact and activity as directed.
And remember Psalm 56:9 – “This one thing I know: God is on my side.”
Beloved ones, the best is yet to be.
You are deeply loved and richly cherished,
Dr Christine Greenwood
Own Your health
Wink: I have multiple packets of Maggi two-minute noodles in my pantry… Should the occasion call (we tried one yesterday and it was surprisingly delicious).