Tag Archives: health

Coronavirus: Contact Tracing, The Weakest Link in Controlling COVID-19

Too focused on deaths and those already tested positive, rather than, the indirect infection of COVID-19 is why the virus continues to raze through our lives.

Obviously, we are referring to ‘contact tracing’ here.

Of course, we are to treat the infected; but if ‘everybody’ is just busy treating people, then the spread would simply continue.

This is like just trying to stop a deep gash from bleeding without first making sure the patient is properly positioned for treatment. Result? Severe blood loss or infection. And this is true whether it’s in a rich country or a developing one. Else, the more advanced countries would have already stopped the virus much, much earlier.

Well, not that COVID-19 has already been controlled by a vaccine, or that Remdesivir has effectively collared the virus that the most vulnerable need not worry anymore, it’s just that governments are now into ‘herd immunity’ whether they realize it or not. See. Most of those who are surviving, are surviving simply because they are younger or has a stronger immune system.

So, how do we cut the head of the snake?

Current tracing tactics

First. While apps like TraceTogether shows promise despite mobile compatibility issues, the thing here is, such apps should be mandatory for all citizens. Otherwise, you leave a hole.

Like many apps, what are the chances of malware or spying in contact tracing apps?

Yet more than its technical problem, not everyone may have a smartphone to begin with. Thus, no matter how encouraging tracing apps may seem, the development of COVID-19 wearables would clearly supersede contact tracing apps as one does not even need a smartphone to get monitored. This should be especially helpful in rural areas where health systems are weak.

Second. Old school contact tracing where you just ask the infected where he has been to and with whom was he in contact with.

Problem with this approach though is that of accuracy. It’s a memory thing, you know. Like, were you really in that place, with those people at the time you say you were? What if these infected people are not even disclosing everything? More people could get infected.

Negatives on tracing tactics

And that’s just on the side of COVID-19 positive people. How about the contact tracing volunteers themselves? Like, are they well trained? What if they get infected as well? Do we have enough of them?

How about their funding? You know, they can not just do this hazardous job for free – and without proper support. You got to supply them with the necessities to perform their work without them losing motivation.

Suggested tracing tactics

First. Speaking of necessities, make sure you acquire accurate testing kits. This is probably the reason why those positive for coronavirus may not disclose everything – they fear that their results could be ‘false positive’ and that their loved ones could have the same fate and so ‘unjustly’ quarantined. And that they now risk of real infection for being housed together with the truly positive patients.

Second. Given that your testing kits are accurate, contact tracing should be applied as a precursor to immediate ‘blanket testing’ – this is regardless if one got into contact with a COVID-19 positive patient or not – within the 5-mile radius from where the infected person resides.

Third. Apply Vietnam’s contact tracing tactics. Given that testing kits are accurate and that there was full disclosure from the infected person, have the names of those who were in contact with the patient (as well as those who were present at the time the patient visited the locality) printed on district newspapers and announced on local television and radio stations.

This should be with a directive for them to visit their health centers for testing.

Dining: Could you live a ‘new normal’ that looks like this?

Sure, this may come with some loss of privacy but if your people are made to understand the gravity of the situation, then such privacy would be a small price to pay to continue living and enjoying the life you know…

Instead of struggling in a ‘new normal’.

Coronavirus: The Reopening of the World

Yes, the world is reopening. But nope. We are not yet in what we could say a ‘post-pandemic’ stage, but rather, in a ‘post-traumatic’ phase where people have now come to terms with COVID-19 and how to live with its threat.

Indeed, we are not yet out of the woods. Vaccines are still being developed. Research still has its twists and turns. Governments are still figuring things out. But people are growing tired and hungry. So, whether this is a case of wealth versus health is not the issue, instead, this is more of a “damn if you do, damn if you don’t” kind of scenario.

If you reopen, you may go about your business but you may also risk catching the virus. If you do not reopen, you may lessen the chances of infection but you could die of hunger. And with cash aid anomalies in some areas, or unemployment benefit scams in more developed countries, people are just getting impatient and stressed out.

Still, life is about taking risks, however, calculated risks.

It is in all forms of travel and short trips where discipline and a good system would, most of all, be tested.

Speed is no longer a factor here. Discipline is. As compared to the early stages of the pandemic where governments have to lockdown and secure their borders to stop, if not, minimize the spread of the coronavirus – what we are more concerned of now is a ‘second wave’ of infection where results could be more devastating.

See. Hospitals have already maxed out, healthcare workers are now weary, essential services are gasping and even a number of leaders are no longer thinking straight. With a second wave, we could then see a scary collapse of governments and institutions.

The Reopening Strategy

Sure, we know of cautious reopening. That’s a given. But this should be treated more than just slowly opening our house’s doors and tiptoeing. This should be opening the main door with a ‘new normal’ in mind.

Thermal cameras may be the better alternative to monitoring people in closed spaces.

It should be understood that face masks and social distancing would go on for a while – and applied to just about every scenario possible.

But more than these, we should consider the Japanese model which is applicable not only at the outset of the pandemic but even on a reopening phase.

Avoid the three C’s. Crowd. Clusters. Closed spaces.

This principle is similar yet more profound and effective than social distancing per se; as here, you automatically avoid getting near someone, even within the recommended two meter distancing.

This is, altogether, avoiding crowds if ever you see one or that is starting to form.

Now, clusters are easier to happen though as traveling, shopping, living in dormitories or checking in hotels as well as working in offices or factories, going to school and even dining out are close to unavoidable. Then again, with discipline, a good system (which involves not only designating entry and exit points but seating arrangements and aircon control) and ‘scheduling’, clusters could be reduced.

Regular disinfecting and proper spacing are key to controlling cluster break outs.

Closed spaces, on the other hand, could be tricky. As again, work, school and stuff associated to travel are highlighted here. While scheduling may help break up clustering – to outwit closed spaces, you need to hold activities in open spaces. Say restaurants, in some cases, can extend their seats up to near the sidewalk. Classes can be conducted at the school’s grounds or online. Meanwhile, working from home should be the new office setup, else, alternated among employees.

These are uncomfortable adjustments we have to make. But to survive and thrive, we have to learn to adapt.

Coronavirus: Kindness during COVID-19

While we hear of discrimination particularly against healthcare workers and Asians, these are unfortunately and obviously due to the restrictions people are experiencing at this time.

It’s a mental health thing – that even domestic violence has gone up. Still, a pandemic or having a lockdown is no reason to speak ill or do wrong to others – but instead, help each other more.

Let’s see some ways we can get kindness into action.

Organized Donations. This is the most common thing for those who wishes to help would do, solicit financial contributions – in person or online. While this method would certainly help, there should be targeted recipients for this to make it more worthwhile or effective. It can not simply be for the general public, like, this donation is for all poor families. Instead, it should be the proceeds of this effort, for example, would go to all the unemployed of XXX city – or the struggling employees of YYY company. Something like that.

Crowdfunding should work especially in times of COVID-19. We are human, after all.

Why?

ONE. Simply classifying poor families from not could miss out aid for those who are actually struggling but not classified as poor. This classification could happen because their ‘irregular’ income was overlooked – that they struggled more when the pandemic happened. TWO. Some ‘groups’ or areas could be more favored by organizers, therefore, favored groups could be given more aid instead of those who needs it more. THREE. Those who could actually contribute much more would just dip their conscience in a pool of little donors by giving breadcrumbs. The rich and the elites should have a different ‘donation box’ as in a separate organization receiving their donations to see who ‘really wants to help’ as per their net worth. After a cut off, only then would these contributions be divided among the recipients.

Food Packs. Another common way to help during COVID-19 would be through food packs. Problem with this one though is that you would need a lot of help in packing, carrying and transporting the food. And if these are cooked meals, then you only help in one serving. Now, while canned food and other staples are good, you should watch out for possible dishonest volunteers or officials who could pocket some of the goods which could reduce the allotted pack for donation.

Food aid for now – livelihood after the pandemic.

Sheltering the Homeless. We do not really hear many who does this. As even when COVID-19 was still nonexistent, the homeless was generally ignored – even by governments. But we are in the time of a pandemic and leaving the homeless on the streets would only make matters worse.

While there are business owners who took action in using their kiosks to shelter the homeless, terminals could be a better option for the fact that travel is still restricted. Not to mention the cleaning facilities it has and the number of people it could accommodate.

Giving Alms. Just like sheltering the homeless, sadly, beggars are ignored by most – and that some governments even have an anti-mendicancy law. It’s like being poor is a crime!?

Okay, teach a man to fish and you feed him for life – then why not give them livelihood? Give short, practical training then give them jobs. Easier said than done? No. Governments and the rich just find it too much work. Okay, there are already NGOs for this, then again, there’s a pandemic that ‘begging’ only showed that donations and support are still lacking.

Check on your friends, relatives and connections. This is as easy as giving a phone call or sending a text message – or even emailing the people you know. Especially since we are in lockdowns, many could be stressed due to financial problems. Ask how they are holding up. Offer them help – whether money, a remote job or a referral.

Do not worry about a reduction in your own cash flow. Remember, what goes around comes around.

Debt relief or Grace period. Even institutions are offering this, how much more between individuals? In fact, there are even laws to this that governments have at this time, like, extended deadlines on house rentals.

One can not just pressure someone who owes him to pay since everyone is on the same boat. We are on lockdown. You can not just say you need the money because you are also being pressured to pay. That’s insensitive. And if you evict him because he owes you, that’s inhumane.

At this time, the only expenditure most households have is just on food. No tuition fees to even worry of since there are no classes. Besides, not everyone even spends on gas to run errands but many just walks. Meanwhile, for areas who just eased their lockdowns, would workers get paid immediately upon returning? No. So pressuring those who owes you when they are still struggling is inconsiderate.

If you worry about your cash flow, then do not indulge in your food. Cut costs. Do not live on pre-lockdown meals. Learn to adjust. It’s part of life.

The world has enough for everyone. Learn to coexist. Be helpful rather than insensitive.

Neighborly Help. Even the Holy Scriptures says so, “Do not forsake your friend or a friend of your family, and do not go to your relative’s house when disaster strikes you — better a neighbor nearby than a relative far away.”

This is true whatever religious sect one may belong to. Better a neighbor nearby than a relative far away as immediate help could be given. And so, be that good neighbor. Do not hold grudges. Do not even listen to rumors about you, but only when it comes from talking face-to-face with the rumor-mongerer himself. Dislikes and misunderstandings are normally just the result of lack of communication.

At the end of the day, be sincerely helpful and considerate even after this pandemic. Remember, there is a God and there is what we call ‘karma’.

Coronavirus: Surviving Lack amidst COVID-19

Lack, what lack? Ventilators? PPEs? Face masks? No. These are obvious pandemic necessities that’s being toilfully addressed by governments. Despite the lack of coordination.

Then what lack?

Financial aid. At least for people who have not received such assistance yet. Those who lost their jobs or who are unemployed. Those who are worrying where to get their next meal.

If you do not belong to the hungry, then this article is not for you; unless you got conscience or you want to be a leader. A real one who is not concerned about publicity or whatever gains – but about his fellow man. One who knows that this is not the time to pressure those who are struggling, or to aggressively ask them to pay for whatever they owe you. One who understands that we all need to eat to survive. One who comprehends that those who are struggling are just victims of circumstances – and so he shows sympathy and helps in whatever way he can.

How to survive lack amidst COVID-19

If you are poor to begin with, then financial aids at this time is already a blessing. What with governments or entities neglecting your needs and blaming your lack of education, no family planning or “poor-man’s” mentality all this time – when, in fact, they benefit from you.

You would only know what it is to be hungry when you experience hunger yourself. That’s how you become empathetic.

Though it has basis, government focus should be on uplifting the poor through livelihoods and giving opportunities – not blaming, which may only apply once you were given legitimate opportunities. Same goes with the rich or those with no real money problems. Help. Don’t you even feel guilty that while you eat the best food, someone’s stomach is rumbling in hunger?

And it’s not just in places you know.

If you are simply a victim of circumstances, then financial aids are certainly a relief from the pressures of life. Especially if you are unfortunate to be surrounded by insensitive people while waiting for your financial assistance. And so, here are some things you can do…

  • Use your savings. This is very evident. But as we know, if you do not have work, then your savings could dwindle to the last penny.
  • Stretch your budget. It’s a lockdown. If you are living on limited resources, then cutting your expenses on non-essentials or any kind of indulgence is crucial. Even on food. Trying to live on pre-lockdown conditions is indulgence.
  • Check out on those who owe you or those who could give you a hand. After all, not everyone in these extreme circumstances are cash-strapped. So first, try collecting from those who owe you, if they are struggling as well, then try approaching a relative or borrowing from a friend. If they are in a similar situation, then…
  • Generate cash. For one, you could sell things you do not need or that are hardly used. Another one could be offering your services where ‘social distancing’ is applicable.
  • Get online gigs. Other than many remote jobs available only for residents of their countries (*existent even before lockdowns), another problem with so-called and more common online opportunities is that the internet or social media is just proliferated with scammers. So be careful and have patience as this is going to take time in sifting; that hopefully, you still have something to eat while still searching. Meanwhile, those who would be ‘lucky’ enough to land a gig could still fall victim to very low payouts, else, ridiculous procedures. Thus, check out various sources.
  • Learn to survive on bare minimum. Let’s face it, times are dire. Thence, be prepared to even eat as little as one small piece of bread a meal if necessary. Forget pride and get out of the victim mentality. Such drastic change in lifestyle does not take away your dignity, it only amplifies your strength, resilience and resourcefulness. This is something you would not get from school or work experiences. And it is these kinds of difficult experiences that translates into wisdom that would put you above the rest – especially if you are a smart and conscientious leader.

As the saying goes, what does not kill you will only make you stronger.

Coronavirus: When to End a Lockdown

According to the World Health Organization, there are six conditions that needs to be met before deciding to end a lockdown.

And so, let’s explore them and see how it goes.

One. Disease transmission is under control.

Two. Health systems are able to “detect, test, isolate and treat every case – and trace every contact.”

Three. Hot spot risks are minimized in vulnerable places, such as nursing homes.

Four. Schools, workplaces and other essential places have established preventive measures.

Five. The risk of importing new cases “can be managed.”

Six. Communities are fully educated, engaged and empowered to live under a new normal.

Could face masks and social distancing be the image of the ‘new normal’?

Our take is that while the six conditions is a good starting point, it needs to be a little more specific and fine-tuned – at the same time – there are some realities that needs to be faced even during a lockdown.

One. What metrics would indicate that COVID-19 is under control? No new cases? As we have noticed of the virus so far, it does not really falter in warmer temperatures. Moreover, we see a number of reinfections occurring in countries like, China and South Korea; not to mention, the virus has mutated into more than 30 strains.

If this is the case, we will need at least a full six months to determine if a lockdown could be ended. But can we afford it? Almost impossible.

Thus, ‘total control’ of COVID-19 can only be successful when issues on ‘temperature’, reinfection and mutability has been resolved. Else, this virus would be more than just seasonal but a depopulation thing.

Two. Detect, test, isolate and treat every case is possible if every case is reported. Otherwise, tracing every contact would not even be doable.

Thence, key here would be reporting or checking on particularly those who are in self-isolation and having regular contact with their caregivers – with caregivers needing to run errands or even seek food and supplies. This is one of those ‘not so’ hidden cases that may lack government support which could contribute to a second wave of infection.

As it is, their criterions only incites possible corruption in local governments – that not everyone who actually needs support are getting it. Including the uninfected but vulnerable as well as the unemployed who risks infection or a tougher recovery since they are undernourished or hungry.

Three. Hot spot risks should not just be minimized but eliminated in vulnerable places. It’s vulnerable! That means, any slight opening is a chance for COVID-19 to wreck havoc and turn the place into a hot spot.

Four. Schools, workplaces, supermarkets are easier to control – but places like churches, concerts, sporting events and even movie theaters are harder to manage since it involves emotions and require even larger spaces to allow ‘social distancing’ for thousands.

What could happen then is that only a limited number of people could attend an event, thereby, making tickets super expensive which could lead to the collapse of the entertainment and sports industries – as there’s no guarantee that sponsors will shoulder more of the organizers ‘expenses’ and desire for profits.

Five. Managing imported new cases would first depend on the origin of the ‘traveler’. Has the traveler’s origin flattened its curve? Else, you risk taking in asymptomatic people.

Ever wondered how would commuting be in the ‘new normal’?

Yes, quarantines could help but – but the traveler is already in your place.

Six. This ‘new normal’ should have a timetable or is eased in phases. Think about this. Can you take the thought of wearing a face mask indefinitely? Or not being able to come close, touch or give a handshake to a friend you see on the road, forever?

While everyone may have been oriented on this new norm, humans are still social animals. This is why the entertainment and sports industries would be chartering unknown territory.

At the end of the day, an effective vaccine would then be the great equalizer – if mutations are ‘more than deadly’. And the only saving grace while in wait would be a strong immune system.

Coronavirus: Should the world just go for ‘herd immunity’?

The world is just getting so tired and impatient of being restricted. So, should the world just go for ‘herd immunity’?

Just notice all these social distancing violators. PPE theft. Insufficient ventilators. Lack of test kits. Defective equipments. Overflowing morgues and hospitals. The useless face mask debate. The panic-buying. The quarrel over toilet paper. The domestic violence. The mishandling of funds. The corruption. The huge hospital bills. The unemployment. The hunger. The worsening racism and discrimination. Some are even attacking healthcare workers and the police.

This is just chaos.

Not to mention the global economy is in turmoil; besides, the vaccine would take a year or so before it becomes available. So, why even continue with lockdowns when all’s a mess?

Moreover, what would you do with violators? Even prisoners are being released due to this pandemic, so why imprison ‘mere’ social distancing violators? India’s approach to violators is actually good. Like, making them squat or write letters of apology. What we don’t like though is the spraying of bleach and the physical disciplining on violators.

Anyway, we already gave the best possible way to handle COVID-19 infections. Put the infected on ‘quarantine island’ or in an isolated facility, so that the healthy could still live normally. Did it happen? No. So, that’s why we have all these spats even from world leaders and organizations. They are just all lost, blaming each other and aching to reopen their territories even while infections are still at a high.

And our suggestion of moving into ‘herd immunity’ is not because we sided with world leaders’ economic worries…

It’s not because we want the world’s elderly or immuno-compromised to be swept away but because we already know how to handle COVID-19. It’s not because of anything else but because leadership goes with knowledge and understanding.

See. If you are at war and your enemy moved south, why would you still aim your artillery towards the north? This means, you should adapt to change. To what and where needs action.

Herd immunity, we did not favor before. Why? Because it would be cruel to the vulnerable if we have not given society a chance to see if people could adapt to lockdowns. It’s been a month or so already, has the curve flattened? Well, even more violators have been reported. And so, can we actually afford 6-month lockdowns?

Thus, the kind of ‘herd immunity’ that we suggest is to just let the people decide at their own risk.

In our kind of ‘herd immunity’, everyone would be required to wear a face mask when leaving home.

Everyone would be given ‘quarantine passes’ with time stamping on the back to indicate the holder’s activity.

If they want to stay home and be safe, then do it. If they want to have a gathering of people, then so be it. If they get sick of COVID-19, then don’t burden the hospital. Just do self-care. They already have the information on how to handle COVID-19. After all, they want fun, so accept the consequences. Only the vulnerable and the disciplined (based on time stamps) would be admitted to hospitals, free of charge – and even given financial aid.

What governments need to do though is to just close the borders. Because other areas are not infected and it would be unfair for them to just allow undisciplined, infected people to go to their places. On the other hand, let non-essential businesses operate, anyway, it’s up to the people if they want to go out or not. However, air and sea travel should be suspended. The principle here is similar to closing borders.

This ‘herd immunity’ should have maximized its effects and benefits in two months. From early infection to peak spreading to 2-week healing at different phases. This would result in two other things: (1) society would start living a healthier lifestyle, and (2) the economy would recover faster. Lockdowns? Two months is still nothing. Everyone’s still scrambling for testing and supplies, while not all regions have benefited from aids – or has contained COVID-19.

Coronavirus: Beating COVID-19 without vaccines

With over a million people infected around the world – and thousands of deaths and counting – and, and a vaccine that would only be available in 12-18 months…

Who needs a vaccine then?

After all, many would have already died. Besides, once it’s out in the market, who and how many could actually afford it? Not to mention the corrupt hands it is likely to go through before it could get to you – if ever. Hey, it’s even a benison already that a vaccine for COVID-19 is being developed. If not for being widespread that it has affected the global economy and the elite, the vaccine would have surely taken a back seat.

Ever heard that vaccines do even take at least 10 years before it’s publicly available? Well, we do not exactly buy safety and toxicity tests, clinical trials and FDA approval as the reasons. These could logically be done in less than two years – if there’s prioritizing, if you’re highly imaginative in studying and predicting (where testing becomes shorter yet very accurate, thus, affecting all other processes) the virus, and if there’s proper delegation among researchers.

To the well-off and those feeling entitled: Think hard about this image – and act on it with no propaganda or breadcrumbing. Now.

And no, certainly, not because scientists do not want to make vaccines but because Big Pharma sees vaccines as not profitable. High risk and low reward so to speak. They would rather make medications for diabetes and hypertension that would rake them millions and billions – than fund vaccines that would just be less profitable.

Talk about capitalism.

Still, if they make the vaccines more affordable – then many could buy it, yet again, it would be for lesser profits.

Then why don’t these scientists just make them without Big Pharma? Funding. Obviously. Scientists that are only supported by government institutions and universities would not go very far. We’re not even talking about illegal or unethical behavior here that could further hurt funding. Anyway, a collaboration between scientists and Big Pharma would only end up having a product that is to the dictates of the pharmaceutical industry.

A product that is less effective. A product that you have to ‘keep buying’ for one’s health maintenance and for Big Pharma’s pockets.

How to beat COVID-19 without vaccines

The decision then falls on us. On humans not known as Big Pharma or elites. Our health is our responsibility – and you should know that by now.

Stay healthy. Eat healthy. Live healthy.

That’s how you beat COVID-19 without vaccines. That if ever you get infected, you would recover faster. As we keep saying, focus on strengthening your immune system. Align your treatment if you are sick. Be responsible.

And do not wait for the vaccine anymore.

Did you know that vaccines do not really work well on the elderly and those with compromised immune systems? This means, whatever your social status or age, you could still get infected and die from COVID-19 if you got a weak immune system.

A vaccine only triggers our immune system to go to work. To prevent infection on ‘healthy’ people.

If you got a strong immune system, age would not matter. Notice that there are even elderly people who have recovered from coronavirus? It is because they got a strong immune system.

Repurposed drugs?

Even the kitchen sink has already been thrown here. From cancer drugs to HIV drugs to SARS drugs to even hair lice drugs. But these are only in hopes of finding a cure – not to shield you from infection. Drugs, in this case, are curative in purpose. It’s not a supplement for strengthening and prevention.

COVID-19 may sound scary because you don’t see it, because you see its effects. But if you know you can do something about it – it’s not so scary, after all.

It’s just that speed is of the essence here and repurposed drugs could jump start the process. However, scientists should just be quick to see the possibilities. Like, viral mutations – not just spotting differences between drugs and diseases. Like, don’t wait for the virus to react or what. Make it react. Be smarter than the virus to speed up vaccine development and not rely on quick fixes, otherwise, very conservative action.

Antibody treatment?

Convalescent plasma therapy can only do so much. Think about this. Plasma from a recovered patient can only potentially be given to 2-4 infected people. Potentially – not ‘surely’. And how many has recovered (compared to those infected) anyway? Do the math. More so, 6 percent of patients who recovered do not develop antibodies which even lessens the number of possible donors. So don’t rely on antibodies, too. Even if they use humanized antibodies. It may reach you, it may not. Besides, their effects do not last as long as vaccines do. Thence, better use antibodies on healthcare workers to protect them instead.

As for humanity, just stay home. Wash your hands. Wear a face mask. Observe social distancing. It’s the age of COVID-19, so cooperate to flatten the curve. But before all those – watch your health, your diet, your lifestyle. That’s how you beat COVID-19 without vaccines.

Work out, exercise!

Coronavirus: The Case between Crozier, Modly and COVID-19

Especially in times of emergency, if you don’t cooperate and coordinate – you lose – and everybody involved loses, too. And that’s what happened to Crozier and Modly amidst this coronavirus pandemic.

You know the story.

When Capt. Brett Crozier requested for assistance in evacuating the sailors and disinfecting the virus-infected aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt, acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly castigated then relieved Crozier of his duties as the vessel’s commanding officer.

Why?

Because Crozier’s email to ‘over 20 people’ was leaked to the press. For Modly, it was a case of ‘unnecessary’ alarm on the ship’s operational readiness (it’s national security we’re talking here, so) and the undermining of the Navy’s chain of command.

This latest Navy exposé is actually more than just seeing it as a 6 or a 9 – it’s about who wrote the number.

Consequently after severe pressure and negativity, Modly resigned from his post.

A skaky Navy leadership

As we see it, this controversy is more than meets the eye as ‘questions’ just puzzle us beyond what’s been reported.

First. We have to note that both sides made their point – except that Modly should not have ridiculed Crozier and the latter should not have used an ‘unclassified’ email system.

Second. If Crozier used an unclassified email system, then something must be wrong with the organization. He may have been traditional at first but perhaps he was ignored which is why a ‘discouraged’ Crozier skipped the chain of command. This could even mean hierarchical issues within the Navy. Investigate.

Third. The entity that gotten hold of Crozier’s email was The San Francisco Chronicle. Isn’t that an American press? They could have been a little more patriotic in this case by not publishing the content. Not to mention the ‘questionable’ persona of the person (whom Crozier sent the letter to) that sent the copy of his email to the press.

Captain Brett Crozier might have opened a can of worms within the organization.

Obviously, ‘capitalism’ won over patriotism here. As in, headlines over national security.

Fourth. With the statement of Joint Chiefs chairman Mark Milley last Thursday, the organization is clearly shaken.

“Don’t test us, we have not been weakened.”

“We’re still capable and we’re still ready no matter what the threat.”

“I wouldn’t want any mixed messages going out there to any adversaries that they can take advantage of an opportunity, if you will, at a time of crisis,” he added.

“That would be a terrible and tragic mistake if they thought that.”

Definitely, we say the Navy is still capable but if you keep barking, you see potential danger. You need help.

As we know, the Navy’s leadership has just been shaky recently. After two crashes that killed 17 sailors in the Asia Pacific region in 2017, then came the firing of the Navy’s last secretary over his handling of the case of a Navy SEAL convicted of battlefield misconduct. That was just last November.

Good leadership can beat firepower. And so especially if this COVID-19 pandemic drags on, better do your homework to avert any opportunistic raids.

Coronavirus: The Floating Vectors of COVID-19

There’s just something concerning with the handling of virus-infected cruise ships. Not to mention, repatriated citizens, expats and overseas workers as well.

Yes, we have heard of several stories and it’s just a wonder why it keeps happening. Like, why do people still go on cruises? Aren’t they aware of its danger in this coronavirus time – or is it just stubbornness that they still push through? Oh, they are already at sea – or there’s just no refund? What about governments, if they could close borders, ports and airports – why can’t they do something about these tours?

Moreover, when passengers are hit by COVID-19, how come governments still do not know what to do? Or do not realize that their current system of managing these virus-infected cruise ships may open up to more transmissions?

How to handle cruise ship passengers and repatriated citizens

While having some kind of sanitary cordon sounds good, like, letting the cruise ship dock then immediately transporting the passengers to the airport before flying them home, the biggest concern (given that the bus driver and everybody involved in the transfer are protected) here would be – their destination.

Okay, these passengers go into health procedures and all upon arrival; but medical professionals get infected, too, despite their protection and it’s due to overexposure. Thus, the healthcare workers that should receive and care for them are those that has the least exposure – as in dedicated personnel, else, you know what could happen.

Any data on the infection spread of cruise ship passengers a week after disembarkation? See, you can’t overwhelm your locale and healthcare system with new cases that could have been brought and treated somewhere else considering these people were not in the country when their infection were confirmed.

As we see it, having quarantine tents within the terminal, port or airport area to receive them would be the second best thing.

And where would that ideal treatment area be?

With more dedication and less burden on healthcare workers, you may see less of this sight on ‘quarantine island’ than on the mainland.

On an island.

If your country has islands other than its mainland, use one minimally inhabited island to at least place all citizens coming from other countries (or cruise ships) for quarantine and treatment. As for medical facilities, there’s what you call ‘preparation’ and just doing it. This way, those in the mainland that are healthy would not get infected due to ‘saturation’. Mind you, infections spread more on the mainland than on smaller islands. This is obviously because there are more people on the mainland and one has to cross the sea just to infect someone else, after all, COVID-19 is about human-to-human transmission.

Even Australia used Christmas Island (though they could have utilized an island closer to its mainland) for that purpose; but special case or not, that’s the way to go. Hey, we have even talked about ‘quarantine island’ already.

This is social distancing par excellence!

Coronavirus: The Issue on Face Masks once and for all

To wear or not to wear? That is the question. Yes, we are talking ‘face masks’ here. Are we to ask the CDC? WHO?

Actually, you don’t need to ask anyone if you have been following facts about COVID-19 – and us. This is all just common sense.

What’s the argument again, to ‘not wear’ a face mask? Because you’re not infected? Because you’re not the one attending to the infected? Because there’s not much face masks available?

Now, what’s the contention on wearing a face mask this time? To protect oneself from ‘silent carriers’ or asymptomatics? Actually, the assertion on now wearing a face mask is kind of funny. Why only now? Like, they only realized it now?? Because of ‘silent carriers’? We say one should be wearing a face mask regardless if one is asymptomatic or showing no symptoms at all. Why?

COVID-19 respiratory droplets stay in the air for at least three hours or so after it has been discharged by an infected person (symptomatics take at least three days to show symptoms, thence, he can not be classified as a ‘silent carrier’) who may likely not even be in that area anymore. Thus, if you happen to be in that area within that timeframe, you are likely to get the virus…

Unless you have, at least, protected yourself with a face mask. Even a homemade mask will do. Just choose a denser cloth for better filtering.

Breathing or talking could spread coronavirus? Of course! The virus stays at least three hours in the air!

See, people are instructed to clean this and that. Disinfect here and there. Because the virus stays on surfaces like copper for 4 hours, cardboard for 24 hours and plastic and stainless steel for 2-3 days. But how could the CDC and WHO miss out on droplets that’s airborne for 3 hours or so? Hmm.

The problem here may be more than just realizing the risks posed by silent carriers, the problem lies in ‘pride’. Like, officials and health authorities do not want to be advised by others. They want to be the ones to dictate the protocols – which is understandable. Then again, they should also realize that there’s this ‘exception to the rule’ where an infinitesimal of humanity may understand stuff even more than they do. You want this virus (or anything for that matter) beaten faster – drop your ego – listen, acknowledge and hire who has this understanding.

More than just the obvious of touching one’s face or holding often held surfaces, what contributed to the COVID-19 spread is that 3-hour portal made by symptomatics (remember, symptoms take at least three days to show up) who were not wearing face masks yet.

Now for worries that social distancing might become lax because of face masks, that’s more of a culture thing. Because people only thinks of themselves instead of being ‘socially responsible’ as shown by those spring break partiers in Florida.

A paradigm shift is needed here. To be more responsible. To be more caring.

People need to understand that we are human. Whatever race you are, we do experience life’s ups and downs. No need to hide it or be ashamed of it. Be authentic. Do not be too engrossed with the Instagram lifestyle – just as LinkedIn members should not shy away from connections suggesting assistance in this trying times.

We are all in this together. Do not take advantage of people but help.

One final note and reminder here for ‘the healthy’ would be two-pronged: face masks could shield you from accidentally touching your face, at the same time, it also protects you from infectious droplets that’s been like ‘airborne’ for three hours. Especially when irresponsible people are still out there.