Nowadays, Coronavirus is a very popular topic around the world. We watched how it has grown in China, where was the first epicenter. And now, we watch how it grows in Europe, especially in Italy, the next biggest area of infected people. And now, Italy is the country with the highest level of deaths and infected people. The situation is still better in America, but if the government and the whole society do nothing to stop it, the virus could kill many people. The situation in the USA can be worse than in Europe because in America is private healthcare and people won’t get help if they don’t have insurance.
Why COVID-19 is so dangerous?
Coronavirus is a very dangerous and rapidly spreading virus, it’s not so much dangerous because of its mortality. But it infects so many people that normal healthcare can’t deal with it and have to choose who should treats. It happened in Lombardia (North Italy) where doctors have to choose the patients with the biggest chances of survival and treat only them. The virus infects our respiratory system and makes it inefficient. It kills people by complications in the form of pneumonia and linking with other diseases which patients have like asthma, cancer, diabetes. In the biggest danger are people in elderly age with common illnesses whose immune system can’t fight with the virus as young humans. Europe is an area where is more elderly people and in middle age than young. So here it’s even more dramatic situation as the virus could kill a huge part of the whole society.
Countries implement different strategies and tactics to reduce the number of infected and killed people due to the virus. Some of them did this too late and now are fighting with an invisible enemy. The enemy which is everywhere but nobody could see it and which daily reaps. Others did it at the right time and now are only curing people and trying to avoid mistakes made by the most infected countries. One thing is obvious, the virus is transported by people and only they could carry it. Pets can’t transport it and aren’t vectors of the Coronavirus.
The question is how the digital development organization decided to fight with the Coronavirus? We know that AI can find medicines for diseases quicker and better than humans. So why not use it to produce a vaccine, if it’s faster and more efficient? The problem may be that the virus from China is a little bit different than a virus from Italy. It is proof that the Coronavirus is mutating and evaluating its genetic code. So how big companies and organization plan to respond to COVID-19? How they plan to hold back a rapidly growing number of infected people around the world?
Response for COVID-19
When the virus hit in China we were trying to help them. Companies which have in Asia company branch bought first aid measures like masks, disinfecting liquids and medical gloves and send them to them. Everybody was wondering if the virus comes to Europe and the West. Only a few weeks ago we were thinking that we couldn’t be infected. And now, we live in developed countries with healthcare system on a high level and we have to hide in our houses to avoid the virus. So what we learned from China? How are we trying to stop it and safe lives of thousands of people?
How do governments deal with the COVID-19?
Governments look quite confused. They have the power to set rules, introduce restrictions and measures to prevent further spread of the virus. But anybody in Europe isn’t introducing very strict and hard restrictions for citizens. Many countries closed their borders for everybody expecting their civilians. Which have to stay for 14 days in quarantine after they crossed the borders. But it’s not enough to stop the virus when it’s already inside the country. They closed cinemas, theatres, shops (pharmacy and groceries are still open) and all places where people can meet and spend time together. It’s also too late for this. They asked people to stay at home and to avoid places where is a lot of people like public transport, markets. Politics say that we have to flatten the curve and we have to follow the rules. Easy. But none of these actions brings the real results which could really flatten the curve. Another thing is that some people still go outside, meet with friends and spend time together. They are really dangerous. Many of them can be infected and may don’t know about it because they don’t have typical symptoms. So it’s even more important to avoid such groups and stay at home for our own safety.
Due to more and more infected people, countries like Great Britain, Spain, Poland, France, Italy and others introduce restrictions on movement. People in these countries can go out only to work, shops or with a dog. And these restrictions included real fines. In Poland, it is even 5 thousand zlotych (about 1100 euro) if they decided that you didn’t need to go outside.
How do organizations deal with the COVID-19?
Organizations try to help governments and local people by updating their actual programs and technology to a new situation. It’s, of course, the most efficient action which they can take nowadays. Depending on which industry company works they offer different services. They’re divided into 2 groups: software or general IT organization and non-IT organizations like restaurants, local groups.
Examples of non-IT organizations are a lot of and are easy to find them because often public television shows examples of pro-medical or social behaviours. For example, there are a few car companies which decided to stop producing cars and start making respirators. A respirator is a machine that works like our lungs, it is necessary when a patient has acute respiratory failure and couldn’t breathe independently. Such a machine helps breathe and save lives. Most wealthy people buy these machines for hospitals as a gift, because only one respirator cost 25 thousand zlotych ( 5’500 euro). And it is a huge demand for them.
Every organization try to help in their own way. Often similar companies like restaurants unite and decide to offer food for free for healthcare staff. Sometimes they even transport packages straight to hospitals and clinics to make sure that every worker gets food and won’t be starving during 12h (or more) shift. I think that every help from companies, organizations and local people is very important. People sew face masks for hospitals, use 3D printers to make googles for doctors and nurses. In one word, we unite to face up with the enemy. It’s very building and good for society. They know that they can rely on each other.
Software ready for help
Harder is to find examples of the IT organization which take part in fighting with Coronavirus. Often they are invisible angels who don’t like to show up or just don’t need to. One of these organization is HealthAlert. It uses a popular communication application called WhatsApp to send messages connected with COVID-19. The only new thing in it is an engine, that sends messages automatically. It is a great example of a program which was already used and adopted to new features. With a limited amount of money, they transfer something usable and already working into a very important tool for South Africans.
What action can save us in a fight with Coronavirus?
It’s obvious that better is to invest in something boring but working and fulfilling their function than to create something new which needs to be tested and implemented. In a fight with COVID-19 matters time and effectiveness of our actions. Remembering the situation with outbreak Ebola in Africa, some organizations decided to implement similar strategies as worked a few years ago in Africa. And, of course, it’s the right way to go. Some medicines, special treatments and precautions are important and helpful.
The important thing is also to educate. Educate everybody but especially nurses and doctors at the first line. Because if people know how to avoid the virus and protect themselves, the less they will panic and be afraid of it. Why do we need to educate healthcare staff? Because they treat us. And with proper knowledge, they can diagnose faster, better and flatten the curve. So we could leave a hospital faster and make a place for another patient who needs treatment. Also, we should provide automated systems that patient could use to diagnose yourself and if necessary ask services for help and transport to a hospital.
E-learning for COVID
An organization which fulfil these statements is COMPASS. They set up a platform where health workers can review standardized programming guidelines. COMPASS is already working in several countries and supports staff at every level with modular interventions. And it’s not something new, but next great tool. Which was adopted and personalized for specific of the Coronavirus. COMPASS now has coronavirus modules developed by health experts for preventative measures and case management at the facility and community level that includes localized indicators, clinical forms, auditing activities, and procurement lists. Health workers can already refer to resources in COMPASS to understand coronavirus impact on their catchment populations.
It may be more for the future but I think it’s also very important to say that now. Investment is a key to success. And every company, organization, people of success know it. So why we didn’t invest in healthcare when was the time? Probably because we didn’t see a need to do it. And now, where is a little too late we start organizing gatherings and auctions for hospitals. It’s a great behaviour and we should do it. But also we should think nonstop about how to improve our infrastructure to be ready for such a tragedy. And I mean by that to pay doctors, nurses, medics and others who work there enough amount of money.
USAID announces about 8.3 billion dollars in financial assistance from multiply corporation, foundation and government donors. All donations are for the response with COVID-19 and the money is moving quickly to affected communities. However, most of the donations come from the government – almost 91%. That’s a situation in the USA. In Poland is quite different because most of the funds come from companies, donations and rich people who would like to support health workers and hospitals.
Don’t be afraid
Remember that after the storm comes the sun. So here will be good too. We have to follow the rules. Spend some times at home without personal contact with others and be calm and patient. We have to be “together in it” and support each other rather than hating and being in a bad mood. So please, stop hating, donor some case and educate.