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  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 15,664 Mod ✭✭✭✭Tabnabs

    "time for preparation, not ­celebration".
    Europe should brace itself for a second deadly wave of coronavirus because the pandemic is not over, the World Health Organisation's top official on the continent has warned.

    Dr Hans Kluge, director for the WHO European region, delivered a stark warning to countries beginning to ease their lockdown restrictions, saying that now is the "time for preparation, not ­celebration".

    Dr Kluge stressed that, as the number of cases of Covid-19 in countries such as the UK, France and Italy was beginning to fall, it did not mean the pandemic was coming to an end. The centre of the European outbreak is now in the east, with the number of cases rising in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, he warned.

    Countries should use this time wisely and start to strengthen public health systems as well as building capacity in hospitals, primary care and intensive care units, he said.

    Dr Kluge also warned that a second wave could coincide with an outbreak of other infectious diseases.

    "I'm very concerned about a double wave - in the autumn, we could have a second wave of Covid and another one of seasonal flu or measles. Two years ago, we had 500,000 children who didn't have their first shot of the measles vaccine," he said.

    Many experts have warned a second wave of the pandemic could be even deadlier than the first, pointing to the 1918-20 Spanish flu pandemic.

    When it first emerged in March 1918, it had the hallmarks of the typical seasonal illness - but it came back in an even more virulent and deadly form in the autumn, killing an estimated 50 million people.

    "We know from history that in pandemics the countries that have not been hit early on can be hit in a second wave," said Dr Kluge.

    "What are we going to see in Africa and Eastern Europe? They're behind the curve. Some countries are saying 'We're not like Italy' and then, two weeks later, boom! They can unfortunately get hit by a second wave, so we have to be very, very careful."

    In the absence of an effective treatment or a vaccine, Dr Kluge said any lockdown had to be accompanied by rigorous public health measures including comprehensive contact tracing and testing.

    Dr Kluge said public behaviour would play a key part in keeping the virus at bay as many countries begin to relax their lockdown restrictions.

    "We are now at a fork in the road - where our actions and individual behaviour determines which path we follow," he said yesterday.

    "Emergency fatigue threatens precious gains we have made against this virus. Reports of distrust in authorities and conspiracy thinking are fuelling movements against physical distancing, other people are behaving over-cautiously.


    "Our behaviour today will set the course for the pandemic. As governments lift restrictions, you, the people, are the main actors."

    Meanwhile, no more than 5pc of the population of France and Spain have contracted the disease, say two studies in a major blow to hopes of "herd immunity".

    A mere 4.4pc of the French population - or 2.8 million people - have been infected, according to findings of the Pasteur Institute published in the journal 'Science' and based on models applied to hospital and death data.

    Even in the worst-hit parts of France - in the east and the Paris region - the infection rate reaches only between 9-10pc on average, it found.

    Such figures are considerably higher than the official count of cases but far too low to effectively stop the spread of the virus through group immunity.

    "Around 65pc of the population should be immune if we want to control the pandemic by the sole means of immunity," it said.

    Herd immunity refers to a situation where enough people in a population have immunity to an infection to be able to effectively stop it spreading.

    The Pasteur Institute's infection rates were measured on Monday, the day when France started to unwind its almost two-month national lockdown.

    Strict confinement led to a drastic decline of coronavirus's reproduction rate, falling from 2.9 to 0.67 over the 55-day virtual standstill of the country, said the researchers.

    However, its findings suggest that "without a vaccine, the herd immunity alone will not be enough to avoid a second wave at the end of the lockdown. Efficient control measures must thus be upheld after May 11."

    Globally, the number of people confirmed to have died from Covid-19 has risen over 300,000, with 1.5 million believed to have recovered. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,306 ✭✭✭✭Drumpot

    How are people in here preparing for a potential second wave?

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,049 ✭✭✭GinSoaked

    Drumpot wrote: »
    How are people in here preparing for a potential second wave?

    Just topping up the supplies that got used in the first wave.

    The good thing being the first wave showed up a few deficiencies in the stocks which can be made good for a second wave.

    It wasn't so much having the supplies with covid-19 because most stuff was in the shops the obvious problem was going out to get supplies.

    Where there were shortages some shops had stocks others didn't which then posses the problem do you increase your risk of infection by shopping in multiple shops. If we do get a second wave I'm stocking up on a few of the things we found in short supply in Lidl where we were doing one shop a week. They still don't have much rice unless you want boil in the bag stuff so will stock up from Dunnes.

    Then we didn't have much in the way of flour for bread, that is another on the list. Then there is Marmite which is a staple here so plenty of jars just in case the stories about a Marmite shortage were true and not advertising hype.

    And masks something I'd never considered before will be well stocked up on.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9,586 ✭✭✭4068ac1elhodqr

    Seen a 5liter (thick plastic) bag of handgel for sale the other day (not even in a bottle) for 30-40 notes.
    Pricey, but still the cheapest consumer price for 2020 so far.

    Back in Dec'19 bought x3, 1liter pump hand gel bottles all for less than the price of pint of Guinness.
    When told the chap in the shop to order in lots more asap, he looked bewildered (Wuhan news was just breaking then).

  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7

    Drumpot wrote: »
    How are people in here preparing for a potential second wave?

    Here? The same in total isolation as I have been preparing for life the last two years and more. Stocked and restocking. Covid has actually not altered or affected my life at all; except my concerns for loved ones out in the world. It is second nature and that is how it needs to be for all of us now, as covid is not going anywhere in the foreseeable future.

    I have worn a mask only once when I went fast to hospital and no hand sanitiser needed.

    A small difference is that on advice I am buying a 20 k bag of coal with each fortnightly shopping delivery. If we get a bad winter? Maybe make sure your fuels are well stocked before winter this year.

    It is things like that that will catch us out.

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