Cases of coronavirus worldwide, can be the “big wave”, not a series of several waves, according to the doctor with the world Health Organization, but other experts have questioned this kind of analogies.
“It will be one big wave”, said the representative of the who Dr. Margaret Harris said during a press conference on Tuesday.
“He’s going to go up and down a little … it is best to to flatten it and turn it into just what lapping at your feet. But at the moment, the first, second, third wave, those things do not make sense and we’re not defining it that way”.
For several months, health officials in Canada and around the world described COVID-19 cases in “waves” and urged the public to help “smooth the curve” ahead of the expected “second wave” this fall. Descriptions of the pandemic several waves dates back to the Spanish flu of 1918 when killed more than 50 million people in three different waves.
A century later, Harris says that the pandemic may be different.
“People still think about the seasons. What we all need to get our heads around this new virus, and … she’s acting different,” she said.
July was a record month for new cases COVID-19 worldwide, due to jumps in the United States and Brazil. Affairs Canada has overall a declining trend, but the country is still not fully smooth curve.
The current trajectory Canada resembles a sharp wave, which peaked on 3 may, with 2,760 new cases and saw a second, more gradual impact in July.
But some experts in the field of health opposed the practice of the description of the pandemic in waves, or as “big wave” or several successive waves. Dr. Michael Curry, emergency physician in Delta, BC, and clinical assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia, contributes to a wait and see approach.
“I think we should stay away from any characteristics of a wave, while we can look at it retrospectively,” Curry told the website CTVNews.CA in a telephone interview on Wednesday.
“We know that this can change quickly, and there is no fixed pattern as pandemics play.”
Curry acknowledged that the epidemic is still remains a fragile situation, and that all it takes to ignite another surge is one thing. But he says that too much emphasis was placed on comparing COVID-19 to influenza that follows a seasonal nature, when in fact, these viruses are quite different.
“Whenever we are dealing with a new station, whether in the health of the economy, we always try to relate it with previous situations. So COVID-19, is an infectious viral infection, and we always tried to treat the flu,” he said.
“We continue to think that it’s the flu when it’s not the flu, and we don’t even understand why the flu this season.”
He compares attempts to characterize the trajectory COVID-19, and like trying to predict the peak in the stock market.
“You don’t know if the stock market reached its peak, until it reached its peak, otherwise we would all be very rich,” said he.
Using a “second wave” to describe the expected increase in cases this fall may be a useful tool for public messaging, but some doctors say it is more a communication strategy accurate scientific measurement.
“There is nothing accurate about it. This is a more useful tool of communication, reported the website CTVNews” Steven Hoffman, a Professor of global health, law and political science at York University in Toronto and Director of the Laboratory of the global strategy.ca in an earlier interview.
Waves or not, the main thing is to use effective public health strategies to suppress cases, said Dr. Eleanor fish, Professor of immunology at the University of Toronto.
“Whether it’s one big wave or the second and third waves or cluster flares ….(key) should be prepared with rapid testing and contact tracing stupid transmission in communities,” said Fish.
As of Wednesday, Canada recorded 115,470 cases COVID-19 and 8.917 people were killed. More than 6000 cases are considered active.
With files from CTV Jackie Dunham