Ideas from Experts to Ministers
من الخبير للوزير
أفكار و مقترحات لنهضة السودان
We must isolate the virus
لازم نعزل فيروس الكرونا
Dr. Muna Abdel Aziz
Director Public Health, Salford City Council, Manchester, UK
د منى إبراهيم عبد العزيز
مدير الصحة العامة في مجلس مدينة سالفورد، إنجلترا
From my experience tackling the virus, I have found there are three realities:
Cases today are the result of transmission two weeks ago – so it takes up to two weeks for anything we do today to make a difference, and it will take longer for the deaths to happen. We had to watch the virus rip through our elders, professionals and poorer communities and there was nothing we could do about it to prevent the next death.
The virus is infectious 2 days before symptoms and the incubation period is 14 days. So, we must isolate people before they develop symptoms. How do we do this? We can’t stop the first transmission, but we can stop the next one. So, someone who has been in contact with the virus must stay at home for 14 days.
The virus spreads exponentially so the number of cases doubles then doubles again. If we break transmission, the number of cases halves, then halves again, and so on.
We must keep the virus visible so we can stop onward transmission:
We do not necessarily need testing. We can act on symptoms and we can act on deaths.
Suspected cases are those with fever, new cough, loss of taste/smell, shortness of breath and anyone who is really unwell with any symptoms.
Suspected deaths are where someone died suddenly or tested positive or had been in contact with a suspected case who was really unwell.
Suspected contacts are people who have been in contact with a suspected case or suspected death
Recommendation 1: If schools, workplaces and communities are given a simple definition of a suspected case, this will mean the virus is more visible where it is circulating. At the moment, the virus is circulating everywhere. So, we must break transmission by a 14-day lockdown.
Every small change can make a huge difference
People who are unwell must stay at home for 14 days.
People who have been in contact with someone who died should stay at home for 14 days.
Recommendation 2: We must start with funerals to stop social gatherings, then weddings and other social gatherings. The more the social interactions, the more the cases, the more the deaths, the more the funerals. This also works in our advantage: The fewer the social interactions, the fewer the cases, the fewer the deaths, the fewer the funerals.
Recommendation 3: We must keep schools open so we can keep the virus visible, and it keeps children safe in school instead of mixing in the community.
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