It’s been warned that countries need to plan for a second or third surge of coronavirus until a vaccine is developed, with Europe remaining pretty much in the grip of the pandemic despite a plateau or decline in new cases since most countries went into lockdown.
COVID 19 isn’t going away anytime soon, and scientists around the globe are rushing to produce a vaccine which would turn the tide against the virus, but it’s expected to be several months away at least, and countries need to plan for future outbreaks once the first peak has been reached.
The important issue is to be prepared, whether it’s for a second surge or another explosion of another likely contagious agent, and this will need the collaboration and understanding of everyone.
Parts of Europe are beginning to move towards a post-lockdown life, with schools now open in some countries and shops in others. Nevertheless, Britain remains under strict lockdown with no expiry date in sight, as the death toll proceeds to rise.
There are certain signs Europe is reaching its peak of the virus but it remains pretty much in the grip of the pandemic, with the continent still accounting for approximately half (46 per cent) of all cases globally, and almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of all deaths.
And even now we’re seeing evidence of a plateau or decline in new cases, its growth must be monitored extremely closely.
In Britain, pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca is making plans with Oxford University to distribute a vaccine if trials prove successful, and the university’s Jenner Institute began human trials last week, with some results anticipated by the middle of June.
It was also said that they want to make sure the rest of the world can make the vaccine at scale.
Dozens of vaccines are currently in progress but it will probably take 12 to 18 months to obtain one that works, but the public health policy will have to remain at the top of the agenda even after the crisis comes to a standstill.
And the one thing that’s apparent in different countries is the speed in which even the best health systems can be defeated and destroyed, so the most important lesson overall at this stage would be that health deserves to be at the peak of the political program.
Health is the driver of the economy and what we see now is that without health, there’s no economy. Without health, there’s no national security, and that once we get out of this pandemic, through combined efforts, this is a lesson that should never be forgotten.