March 16, 2020 Update: This article was published February 1, 2020 when Covid-19 had just been reported on our country’s west coast. At this point, coronavirus is clearly not being blown out of proportion.
The team at WhatKillsit.com operates out of Western NY. Our schools are closed until further notice as are churches, gyms, casinos etc.,. All restaurants are take-out only. Our grocery stores are cleaned out. If you live in an area that is still free of covid-19 cases, calmly make preparations now and please don’t hoard supplies. We are grateful we took Covid-19 seriously and did not have to become part of the chaos. Our best wishes are with you. Thanks for visiting.
Here is our article as published February, 1, 2020………………….
Funny enough, one of our favorite things to do at WhatKillsIt.com is to get together and watch the Netflix Documentary Series: Pandemic. If you haven’t heard of it and you’re the type of person who enjoys lessons in pandemic outbreaks like Ebola, SARs, MERS and Swine Flu; this (sometimes slow) documentary series is a little bit binge-worthy.
So when people ask: Is the new coronavirus threat being blown out of proportion? I think my opinion is based on how long it’s been since we watched the last episode.
Obviously, pandemics of the past were once little emerging viruses without a name. But eventually they were given names, spread across the globe, and took more lives.
In short, we think the coronavirus threat, officially named: Covid-19 is both credible and serious. It is growing, not slowing and the death rate is higher than what media reports. Media consistently reports death rate at under 2% while a quick calculation of stats from Johns Hopkins reflect a death rate of 3.42%. (Link to Current Stats)
How is Death Rate Calculated?
Plus, let’s not kid ourselves about how death rate is calculated. All pending cases (hospitalized people) are counted as survivors…until they are not. For instance 100,000 cases with 2,000 deaths = a 2% death rate. But what if 80,000 of those cases are not yet resolved? Well, they still get calculated as survivors.
Our guess is the true death rate will be significantly higher (if we ever get to the end). Anyway….
We have decided to seek the facts, make decisions based on those facts and do our best to avoid the endless, speculative coverage. It’s really the only way to stay sane.
2019 Coronavirus Fact vs. Fluff
When it comes to Covid-19 or any emerging viral threats, one of the best ways to separate facts from fluff is to get your information from reliable sources. For the most up to date information, with ZERO sensationalism, those sources will be the
- Daily Situation Report (World Health Organization).
- Johns Hopkins Interactive Map
- Center for Disease Control
and other sources committed to FACTS. NOT local or national news outlets.
News media does report some facts obtained from credible organizations, but they are far more interested in opinion pieces that aren’t based on facts… and that can get overwhelming.
How to Prepare for Coronavirus Outbreak
Everyone responds differently in these situations and that’s just human nature. But at the end of the day, make sure you’ve actually done something to prepare vs. just soaking in news coverage.
For us, it’s all about research and data, so personal stories and hypotheticals don’t play a major role the way we’ve prepared. Here is what we do and how we have prepared ourselves and our families in the event that 2019 Novel Coronavirus, Covid-19 hits your hometown:
- Bookmark the Johns Hopkins Map, CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and the WHO (World Health Organization and check their sites daily. The links are provided above.
- Eat immune system boosters daily. Vitamin C Tablets (link to Vitamin C Options), mushrooms, quality yogurts, bell peppers, citrus.
- Stay Hydrated – a great way to boost immunity while staying hydrated is by taking boring water and adding fizzy vitamin packets (product link).
- Pick up some disinfectants that were proven effective against the the 2002 Deadly Coronavirus outbreak SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) link to disinfectants article
- Have 70% alcohol hand sanitizers in your desk, car, purse/bag, and home link to best hand sanitizer studies
- Pick up some disposable masks from your drugstore in case you get sick. Or to protect yourself while caring for sick family members, you can read which masks are used by healthcare workers here (link to masks).
- Exercise extreme caution if you have travel plans and always check WHO website for the most current guidance while traveling.
- Prepare your home for a “comfortable enough” staycation. This means some extra water, stocked pantry, filled prescriptions, and a healthy stash of child or pet needs like diapers and pet food. Then, look beyond the pantry – read our article here: preparing beyond the pantry.
If you can manage to do all of the above, you will be in a great position if the Coronavirus Covid-19 threat reaches you. By all accounts, it is not being contained as we’ve gone from 15 cases to 65 cases here in the US in under 10 days.
As the numbers increase, things will start to get a little crazy. If you’ve prepared your homes with the above comforts, you’ll be able to focus on the next level of preparedness while others scramble to accomplish what you’ve already done.
There is an awful feeling that happens as a result of being forced to scramble …or going to a store to find the shelves bare. It happens here during blizzard season and it really causes unnecessary panic and chaos and brings out the worst in people.
So if it’s within your means to do some early, modest, intelligent prepwork, you’ll be thanking yourself if this gets serious. We think it’s heading that way.
But, if it goes away, we can all celebrate that too.