Is the Corona virus as lethal as the media has led us to believe or is it a victim of poor statistics because everyone is too worried to find out the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth!
Looking at the newspapers from the Hindustan Times to NDTV videos online, we are filled with statistics and more statistics about the virus that seem to just hit us in the face. The numbers are like bullets that seem to find their target quite well, scaring the living daylights out of anybody who as access to it.
But what everyone fails to do, is put it into perspective. So to get a realer picture of what we are faced with, lets go back to a report by Dr Anthony Fauci, medical expert from the Trump administration, who pretty much gave us the difference between the impact of a normal seasonal flu compared to the Corona virus. He claimed that that this particular virus was ten times more lethal than the seasonal flu where the seasonal type kills 0.1 percent of people and the Corona being fatal in 1 percent of cases. Yes,he agreed it was fast moving and the illness was severe so social distancing was probably the way to slow the spread, not necessarily to stop the infection.
I recently received a video doing the roundswith Lalit Khajuria talking to SSP Shailendra Mishra (MD), which reflects a similar percentage when he talks about the 1000 people effected in Kashmir. He observed that out of the 1000, the virus killed 12 and these were mainly people with underlying conditions like diabetes, hyoertension or obesity.The rest recovered and funnily enough, half of these, were asymptomatic and didn’t even know they had the virus.
Such studies are shown again in numerous American studies by Stanford university, where they concluded that figures shown in the news were unrealistic. Actually their own figures showedby antibodies in the blood, that 50-80 times more people were effected compared to statistics issued by the media.Many just never realised that they had the infection, or if they had it was mild, showing herd immunity.
I am definitely not trying to dilute the impact of the virus on the cases that were serious and fatal but just trying to put it all into perspective. Here in India, where the population is the second biggest in the world, social media seems to have driven people into situations that are even more dangerous as they pile dangerously onto buses leaving for their home state. Bad weather conditions and infrastructure have resulted in buses toppling over and killing innocent citizens.
I absolutely salute the efforts of the likes of Shahrukh khan and Salman khan who are contributing and getting people back home, but on the ground, the uncontrollable social media frenzy has just created an even more lethal frenzied scenario that may kill more than the virus it self.
To get even more clarity on the situation, the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Report, states that India accounts for the largest number of deaths on the road. It is responsible for around 11 percent of all road accident related deaths in the world and in 2018, claimed 1.5 lakh lives out of 1.3 billion. In fact, officials in Mumbai go far as to say, that the Corona virus lockdown has reduced deaths on the road by 15 percent and where 10 murders were reported everyday, well they’ve only now see reports of natural deaths. Am I fighting the case for Corona in court, of course not, but just need people to get a bit of perspective and to think for they act.
So we all need to calm down and think before we or influencers of any kind, do or report something that may encourage a population of 1.3 billion, to go into a tailspin. Reality is, as I talk to residents from the villages surrounding complexes in the city, that lots of People on the poverty line are running home as landlords still demand rent regardless of what the state says. This then puts them in more risk as they travel in a group, reducing their chances of recovery as they go to places with limited heath care.
So as you can see, a domino effect based on a knee jerk reaction to media that are looking for a sensational story, which is their right I suppose, but with dire consequences. More effort probably needs to be put into communication top to bottom rather than scaring people with lockdown and reducing income for daily wagers which might just do more harm than good.
Point is, the world is running helter skelter with figures that are incomplete as nobody seems to have tested their nation completely, resulting in a relatively high death quotient. How can the results of this be relied upon and actions be taken based on statistics that are false. Sadly, reality is that we have taken action and the long term implications may just be far more dangerous than the Corona virus itself.