As a reminder to those who may be new to Legal Insurrection, I have a degree in biochemistry and experience in dealing with releases of potentially infectious materials. I am the author of a book on bloodborne pathogen safety.


Today, I want to take a look at the appropriate level of risk and its proper management when addressing the current situation related to the Wuhan coronavirus in this country. While it is tragic to learn that an American died in Washington state of the disease, it is important to understand that there were underlying health problems that made the  patient more vulnerable.

The risk to most Americans is currently low. And while the risk level may change, because the press is choosing to cover the news through the prism of its Trump Derangement Syndrome, I would like to touch on a few points made by President Donald Trump and his Coronavirus Task Force today, highlight some salient scientific facts, and make some common sense recommendations.

First point: Trumpvirus is #FakeNews. Trump is not to blame for the virus. If there is any blame that can be placed, it may be on the Chinese scientists who worked with this virus and failed to follow decontamination protocol. So, going forward, any report that points the finger at any American should be dismissed immediately. Eventually, the truth will become known, and it will be a valuable lesson to all biological researchers and facility managers.

Second point: You don’t need the masks. Only medical professionals or those working directly with sick people require the protective masks, or those who are reasonably anticipated to potentially infect others with the virus (to protect others). The masks, N95, require fit-testing and training to be used effectively. Any other kind of mask won’t protect against aerosols and is ultimately nothing more than decoration.

Additionally, if the correct masks become scarce, then they might not be available for the medical personnel who actually need them. This could endanger the lives and/or health of those healthcare providers, as well as all who rely upon those same providers when they fall ill.

The best approach is to follow the protocol for flu prevention that has been tailored to address the Wuhan coronavirus, which targets the respiratory system:

  • Don’t touch the eyes, nose, and mouth unless there is an need to do so.  This action is a lot harder than it sounds.
  • Pay attention to where your hands go: Do you have to use the hand-rail? When was the last time you cleaned your cell phone?  How clean is that refrigerator or microwave handle? How clean is the car’s steering wheel?
  • Cover mouth when coughing or sneezing, then throw the tissue in the trash. Then, wash your hands. The trash can should be cleaned and sanitized regularly.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. (For example, one could use disinfectant wipes around the seating are of a plane before sitting down)
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (sing the “Happy Birthday” in your head as a good timer), especially after going to the bathroom, before eating; and  after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.  If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

There is a lot more to proper hand-washing than one might suspect, and I have shared this video with my family as a reminder.

Third Point: Protect your respiratory system now.It is clear that the virus targets the respiratory system, and those with medical conditions impacting the lungs are hit hardest. I suspect one reason the Chinese have seen so many deaths is that their population has to contend with air pollution at levels currently unimaginable to most Americans.

In fact, NASA has monitored the Wuhan area for nitrogen dioxide (a gas known for its adverse effects on the respiratory system). The levels of that gas, associated with manufacturing, has plummeted since the lockdown in China.

Imagine, then, a person who becomes infected with COVID-19 also has respiratory system that has been exposed to elevated levels of nitrogen dioxide for many years. The chances for death would increase, and the recovery from the disease would likely be slower.

Other risk factors also include pre-existing heart conditions, diabetes, and obesity. Therefore, if you wish to enhance your preparation for the Wuhan Coronavirus, protect your immune and respiratory systems:

  • Stop smoking.
  • Take vitamins, drink plenty of water, and start a sensible exercise regimen.
  • Consider your home and office environment: Are there ways to improve the air quality that are easy to implement that makes it easier for you to breathe (e.g., air filter, humidifiers).
  • If you suffer from a respiratory ailment (e.g., asthma), confer with your doctor for additional guidance.

Fourth Point: Tune out the mainstream media.The press wishes to induce economic turmoil to harm Trump’s re-election and to make the coronavirus into his Katrina.

The media’s fear-mongering has the real effect of jeopardizing the welfare of millions of Americans, like my mother, who rely on their investments to pay for food, medicine, warmth, and other essentials.

Until the press decides that it wants to help the country instead of destroy Trump, it needs to be quarantined.

The #FakeNews hoaxes regarding Russia and Ukraine have been merely annoying. However, the Democrat/elite media hoax regarding the coronavirus is outright destructive.

 

 
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