COVID-19: WHERE TO NOW? Today's report from the UK government's top scientific advisors, on the state of the nation COVID-wise, makes for both refreshingly honest and sobering reading. 
Seventy thousand people are now infected, with six thousand people per day getting the virus. Ages 20-29 are seeing the biggest increase; the lowest is among children and people aged 70-79. 
However, while younger people are less likely to die from COVID-19, when they catch it disease they pass it up the age groups, to the elderly who are most susceptible to death. Social responsibility becomes paramount in times like these!
If the number of COVID-19 infections continues to double every seven days as at present, by mid-October we could have 49,000 people infected per day (and 200 deaths per day). 
Eight per cent of the UK population have been infected and developed antibodies which have fought back. However, this doesn't mean that they can't be re-infected. There are a number of cases where that has happened. 
The vast majority of the population still remains susceptible! None of us can say, "I'll just manage my own levels of risk" because to do this means that we are making risk decisions for other people. 
There are several courses of action that will help us get through the colder months when respiratory diseases like COVID-19 and flu flourish.
We can start by reducing our own social risk and isolating if we have symptoms - and identifying our contacts and notifying them.
We can also break unnecessary links between households. 
Collectively, via government, we can invest in science, especially the development of vaccines and diagnostics. On the vaccine front, the UK is moving forward quite well. It is possible that some treatment will be available by the end of 2020, if only for small groups of the most vulnerable people. 
Most likely we won't see a vaccine for the broader population before the first half of 2021.
We must resolve to act with a sense of civic responsibility, refusing to undertake risk-management on behalf of other people, by acting in risky ways ourselves.
The bottom line in all of this is that we need to maintain our resolve, to be patient. This is still a pandemic; it is nobody's friend, whatever their age. Working together we can, in the pre-vaccine period, keep infection rates down. 
This will produce added benefits, such as lessening pressure on over-stretched health services and freeing government resources to concentrate them on managing the line between our economy and our collective health.

© Copyright with Mal Fletcher

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