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May 11, 2020

COVID-19: A Threat to Your Health or Your Job?

COVID-19: More Than a Threat to Your Health

When it comes to COVID-19 what should be more concerned about? Your health or your job? Is the pandemic more of a threat to your health or your job?

COVID-19, threat to your health
Photo by thom masat on Unsplash

According to WorldOMeter the population of the United States in round numbers as of May 9, 2020 is 331,700,000 and there have been 78,701 deaths from COVID-19. This represents 0.024% of the US population. Which means that 99.976% of the United States Population has not died from SARS-CoV-2 the virus that causes COVID-19. That should make you feel much better.

The statistical models trying to predict the impact of COVID-19 that have been used to shape policy have been wrong. The most dire predictions stated that 250, 000 Americans would die from COVID-19. This is 3 times as many as who have already died. This means if that model is eventually shown to be correct, then 0.075% of the US population would die from COVID-19. Which means that 99.925% of the Americans would survive the pandemic.

That should make you feel better, too.

But, some who are heavily invested in the vaccination industry want to vaccinate the entire world for this virus. If 99.925% are not going to die from it doesn’t seem like there is much to be gained by vaccination except in high risk individuals. But, to vaccinate the global population?

Do you know how many deaths are prevented by the annual flu vaccine? Take a wild guess. Try just 8,000 deaths were prevented during the 2017-18 flu season because of influenza vaccination. If you only read the headline of the linked article you may be mislead. Read the fine print. Also, for that flu season there were 79,000 flu deaths which is about what we now see for COVID-19 (which is will certainly increase in numbers).

Still think vaccination is the way to beat this virus?

The more we test for SARS-CoV-2 the more we discover that many more people have been infected with the virus and not even know it. Which means the more we test for the virus, the less deadly is seems to be.

No doubt SARS-CoV-2 can be deadly, but only to a small fraction of the population. The average age of those who have died from COVID-19 in the United States is 75.

Not to minimize the significance of any death, but respiratory infections caused by any number of pathogens cause death in the 75 year-old and older age group year after year.

Why? Because they have a compromised immune systems, especially those who have medical problems and stay indoors most of the time which causes the immune system to weaken further. Respiratory infections are the leading cause of death in the over 65 age group.

Thus, we can probably conclude that SARS-CoV-2 may not be so virulent, but is deadly to certain individuals with “defective” immune systems. Again, several people have been infected and never developed symptoms. This means they have a robust immune system.

Sunlight and Outdoors: Spanish Flu Experience

The Spanish Flu pandemic took place between 1918 and 1920 or a hundred years ago. For some reason we seem slow to learn from history. Perhaps we feel our predecessors were not as sophisticated and knowledgeable as we are today.

But, here is what medics caring for victims of the Spanish Flu discovered. What follows comes from this article:

Medics found that severely ill flu patients nursed outdoors recovered better than those treated indoors. A combination of fresh air and sunlight seems to have prevented deaths among patients; and infections among medical staff.[1] There is scientific support for this. Research shows that outdoor air is a natural disinfectant. Fresh air can kill the flu virus and other harmful germs. Equally, sunlight is germicidal and there is now evidence it can kill the flu virus.

If you are a high risk individual for COVID-19 you should take precautions, but that does not mean cloistering yourself indoors all day long. Doing so in the long run only serves to weaken your immune system.

You should go outdoors and work in the yard and go for walks. People exposed to dirt when young have fewer allergies and respiratory complaints. Being exposed to less virulent pathogens in the environment helps develop and strengthen the immune system.

Loss of Jobs

Perhaps the greatest tragedy related to COVID-19 is the loss of jobs for what is now 33 million Americans. This loss jobs is more or less by government order which has determined which jobs are important (essential” and which jobs are not (non-essential). Simple logic would suggest that if a job exists, it is essential, or it would not exist.

COVID-19 has been more than just a threat to your health but potentially your livelihood.

At this point we could say that for a vast majority of Americans COVID-19 is a bigger threat to your job than to your health.

What is the impact of loss of jobs. Well, for every percent of unemployment there is a 3.3% increase in deaths from drug overdoses and a 0.99% increase in suicide. These are called deaths of despair.

You Cannot Hide from the Virus Forever

You can stay in home and essentially quit living hoping that a vaccination will soon be available or some cure becomes available. But, both are not likely. To date there has never been a safe and effective vaccination for a coronavirus that has ever cleared animal testing. To protect yourself from SARS-CoV-2 we suggest you work on improving your immune system while employing common sense actions to minimize exposure to the virus. And how you do that will be the topic of our next article.

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Dr. Joe Jacko

Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio at Grandview Primary Care. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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