The social distancing measures adopted today in all countries to combat the deadly coronavirus pandemic may remain in place until 2022. That’s what the latest scientific data from Harvard researchers say.
The study, which was published on Tuesday in the medical journal Science, will no doubt come as a shock to many, as governments around the world have already announced on the eve of the announcement that they are beginning to see the first consequences of these measures.
The models used in the Harvard study warn that to prevent more and more waves of the pandemic from occurring, individual social distancing measures must be observed for years, not months. Only in this case the system will work and it will be possible to delay or even keep the peak of infection.
Harvard believes that if you just drastically remove all the blocking of movements now, the second wave of the pandemic will occur immediately and it will be very serious. Therefore, according to Harvard, the introduction of one period of social distancing to fight the virus will probably not be enough.
The researchers write:
“According to our forecasts, repeated SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks are likely to occur in winter. They will begin after the first, and most severe, wave of the pandemic, followed by the removal of quarantine measures. Therefore, long or intermittent social distancing up to 2022 may be necessary to avoid exceeding the capacity of intensive care.
The scientists also add that even after 2022, strict surveillance of the virus should still be maintained, as in 2024 it is possible to re-spread the infection.”
The day before, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the social distancing in the U.S. may expire on May 1, but already now health officials strongly disapprove of this decision. Health officials and lawmakers are therefore debating what will happen when the virus progresses and are working to decide when the U.S. should lift the quarantine.
In their study, the scientists used seasonality data from other known human coronaviruses to build a model of long-term interactions, suggesting some cross-resistance between them and COVID-19. And under this model, social distancing measures must remain in place for the next five years.
Researchers say that based on modeling, a key factor in the coming years will be the rate of extinction of immunity to viruses that scientists have not yet determined. In all simulated scenarios, including one-off and intermittent social distancing, the pandemic begins again – once the social distancing measures are lifted.
In the UK, quarantine measures, according to the government’s initial order, expire next Thursday, but for now it looks like all these measures will be extended.
Harvard’s research doesn’t oblige anyone, of course, to anything, but the 18 months that officials have long been talking about began with a study from Imperial College London. While everyone was rattling for about two weeks, in London they wrote that the quarantine should be extended to a year – which, in fact, it is now becoming reality.
There is no official order about 18 months yet – but everything seems to be going to that way, the brains of the public have prepared, officials discuss it openly. And when the people prepare to accept the restrictions for 18 months, they will be announced first for 2022, and then for 2024.
That’s how it’s probably going to happen. More precisely – will not happen, but planned, because what will actually happen and how everything will turn – even analysts under the World Government do not know exactly. We don’t know that either, so we’ll be here discussing it.