‘The End Is In Sight’: Experts Say Pandemic Could End Soon

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“We’re not going to be living like this forever … “

PLUS: Global economic impact exceeds $1.25 million for each death attributed to Covid-19

Experts express optimism about COVID-19 pandemic coming to a close

November 21, 2020

Boston Globe – While the coronavirus continued to rip through the country and daily counts of new infections rose to record heights, the seemingly impossible occurred: good news.

Promising trials from Pfizer and Moderna suggest that highly effective COVID-19 vaccines could be available in a matter of weeks, bringing the end of the pandemic in view for the first time since March.

But the end of the pandemic does not necessarily mean the eradication of COVID-19, epidemiologists said. The closing act of this public health calamity is likely to be a gradual return to a new normal, with infections, restrictions, and public health fears falling away one by one rather than all at once.

Getting there will not be as simple as getting a shot, but with effective vaccines, robust distribution plans, widespread testing, and continued social distancing through the winter — all possible but hardly assured — our exit from the pandemic could come much sooner than many dared hope.

“The virus is not likely to go away, maybe ever, but certainly not for a long time,” said Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health. “But that said, we’re not going to be living like this forever, and in fact, I expect by springtime that things will start really getting much, much better. And then it’ll continue to get better. And at some point, we will no longer feel like we’re living in the middle of a pandemic.”

Massachusetts’ daily count of new cases last week averaged over 2,000, the highest level of new infections the state has seen since spring … Read more. 

PUTTING IT IN PERSPECTIVE: THE NUMBERS

Global economic impact exceeds $1.25 million for each death attributed to Covid-19

Source: Worldometers as of Nov 22, 2020 

  • Current World Population: 7,827,146,805
    • Reported coronavirus cases worldwide: 58,612,995 (o.75 percent of the world’s population)
    • Everyone else: 7,768,533,810 (99.25 percent of the world’s population)
  • Worldwide closed cases: 41,964,657
    • Recovered/Discharged: 40,575,947 (96.7%)
    • Deaths: 1,388,710 (3.3%)
  • Worldwide deaths this year: 52,579,295
    • Deaths attributed to COVID: 1,388,710 (2.64%) [does not account for co-morbidities]
    • All other causes: 51,190,585 (97.36%)
  • Currently Infected Patients: 16,648,338
    • Mild Condition: 16,545,862 (99.4%)
    • Serious or Critical: 102,476 (0.6%)
  • Percentage of global population to die of COVID: 0.018% (one out of every 5,571 people)
  • Everyone else:  99.98%
  • ECONOMIC IMPACT: 
    • “As one measure of the global fiscal and monetary responses, the IMF estimated that government spending and revenue measures to sustain economic activity adopted through September 2020
      amounted to $5.4 trillion and that loans, equity injections and guarantees totaled an additional $5.4 trillion, or a total of $10.8 trillion.” – Congressional Research Service, Nov 19, 2020 
    • Economic impact per COVID-19 death: $1,285,714 (note: $10.8 trillion estimate does not include healthcare costs)

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