Covid-19: Virologist Urges ‘Learn to Live With the Virus’

by birtanpublished on August 23, 2020

In the zeitgeist this morning is the great fear and you're certainly qualified to address the fear in new zealand the virus returns maybe on a measured basis but nevertheless returns

And at chapel hill the university of north carolina has made an abrupt shift because the virus just simply won't go away i don't want to talk about a second or third wave

But is it delusional to believe you can get social again once you get control of cases and deaths uh good morning uh so i think it's um vital in a way that we don't let ourselves be controlled by the fear

Of this virus so certainly the virus is still with us there's absolutely no doubt about that we're seeing spikes of cases wherever lockdown is being relaxed i think

What we have to do is learn to live with the virus so that we have to all learn how to take measures for ourselves how to keep ourselves and each other safe um but i think the idea that we can live

In lockdown forever it just can't happen do you see this is a really important question folks and this of course deals with everyone with kids going back to school are we asking too much are we trying to

Find a medical perfection that doesn't exist i think there is something in that yeah i mean certainly so kids going back to school we're definitely going to see

Some spikes and uh you know the idea that young people don't get the viruses is just not true young people certainly do get the virus and they pass it on and some of them you know are get sick

With it um so we we are not gonna anytime soon get to the point where we can go back to what we all considered normal uh previously

So we have to say we have to learn to live with him but pamela what do we know and not know about the virus so do we know if people that have had it are definitely protected

Do we know if you can find it with t cells and do we know if actually this thing is mutating or not so we know that people who get the virus do develop antibodies

And there is some work that does suggest that those antibodies are neutralizing that what we don't know is whether those antibodies actually do protect you from the infection um and we don't know how long they're

Gonna they're gonna last coronavirus antibody response generally doesn't last very long maybe a year um in in in most people um the t cell response certainly does seem to be important in many of the

Vaccine strategies that are um coming into uh trials at the moment are are also considering making sure that the t cell response works as well

Um the uh virus was certainly tracking uh the mutations there's a lot of good work being done um in the united kingdom and elsewhere um to look at how the virus is changing and certainly that

You know that we have seen mutations from it originating in in china and um you know moving across southeast asia and um into europe and the virus has mutated um in that time now we don't know what

That mutation particularly means you know there were some suggestions at the beginning that the mutation as it got to europe uh made it more virulent um but you know i don't think that has

Been proven it seems to make it more transmissible so it can pass from person to person more easily but whether it makes it a more severe infection

Um it isn't proven at all um and you know the the usual way the virus is is that as they mutate they they become less severe so they sort of attenuate so we just you know we need to track it

We need to monitor it very carefully on the antibodies if it's unclear whether you're protected once you have antibodies does it mean that we could never have we

Could also potentially never have a vaccine i i think you know the the elements of the t-cell um part of the vaccine as well um potentially it could mean if

You know there's no immunity to this virus then then a vaccine wouldn't work but i think that's very unlikely to happen and and you know i think worst case scenario is a vaccine

May not be fully protected but it may make for a less severe disease that's an you know it's not an ideal thing with a vaccine but it would be better than the situation we have at the moment so you know i think um that the likelihood

Is that that there will be some protection perhaps just not very long lived and we might be in a situation where we need to vaccinate people on an annual basis against this virus

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