Briones: Moving on

On the go

MAYBE we’ve been looking at this problem the wrong way.

Yes, the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) is highly infectious. Yes, the number of Covid-19 cases in the country, especially here in Cebu City, continues to rise.

But what the Department of Health or even the World Health Organization (WHO) fails to point out is that getting infected is not a death sentence.

In fact, eight out of 10 who test positive for the disease don’t or hardly display any symptoms. In other words, they have Covid-19, but they are not sick. At all.

For almost all of those who do get sick, they have a preexisting medical condition that makes them vulnerable.

So perhaps health authorities should concentrate on why majority of Covid-19 positives are asymptomatic.

That may sound naïve, even preposterous to those in the medical profession, but even though I’m not a doctor I can still see what’s going on and I can put two and two together.

I feel the world has been taken hostage, unfairly mind you, by a disease whose mortality rate pales in comparison to other killers out there.

Let’s look at some numbers, shall we?

As of Sunday, May 17, 2020, the WHO reported 307,537 confirmed deaths from Covid-19 around the world.

Now let’s look at the number of people who fell victim to cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), the number one cause of death globally in the last several years.

According to the WHO figures, an estimated 17 million people lost their battle with CVDs in 2019.

Closer to home, Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia showed mayors of towns and cities under Cebu Province a data-driven analysis of the Covid-19 situation here in Cebu during a meeting on Friday, May 15.

Yes, the number of novel coronavirus cases is on the rise, but she also pointed out that the disease is less fatal compared to other diseases, such as CVDs.

Covid-19 has killed eight people in the province, which has a population of around 3.2 million. That’s less than three deaths per million people compared to 1,080 deaths per million people for CVDs, the governor said.

I know talking about death is morbid. I also know that behind those figures are people who have lost a loved one. And I don’t mean them any disrespect. But we need to get real.

Cebu and many parts of the archipelago have been under some sort of community quarantine to contain the disease for more than a month.

As a result, many businesses have shut down. Countless workers have lost their jobs. And the government cannot afford to support all those millions of people who rely on dole-outs to survive this health crisis.

So we need to move on. The future may be bleak, but it is unwritten. And we won’t know what awaits us unless we take that first step.


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