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Infectious Disease Consultant to Asharq Al-Awsat: No Solution but to Coexist with Virus

Infectious Disease Consultant to Asharq Al-Awsat: No Solution but to Coexist with Virus

Tuesday, 16 June, 2020 - 07:15
Small bottles labeled with a ‘Vaccine COVID-19’ sticker and a medical syringe are seen in this illustration taken April 10, 2020. (Reuters)
Riyadh - Mohammed al-Ayedh

Saudi Dr. Nezar Bahbari, infectious disease consultant, said that the only current solution was to coexist with COVID-19 regardless of the conflicting views about this issue.

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat, he noted that the virus has not weakened, but that the rate in which it is spreading has decreased.

He recalled the deaths, infections and economic losses that occurred during the outbreak of the Spanish flu in 1918, noting that the world could coexist with it and overcome it.

“This gives hope that our world would be able to surpass the current pandemic,” he underlined.

Meanwhile, Gulf countries continued the gradual return to normal life, and began operating domestic flights and preparing for the partial reopening of international trips next month, in addition to the return of employees to work sites.

On the mechanism that enables societies to reduce the spread of the virus, Bahbari explained that individuals must first be classified to determine the most appropriate way to coexist with the virus.

“The first category are those who are very worried about COVID-19. This concern stands against their ability to coexist with the virus, because it reduces their immunity to fight it,” he said.

He also pointed that the society deals with the coronavirus, as well as the stage of coexistence with it, in several patterns.

“There is a vast majority that is fed up with social distancing, while another group believes that what is happening is only a conspiracy, and others claim there was no need for such measures in the first place,” Bahbari emphasized.

“What’s important is to gradually return to normal life and start to coexist with the virus,” the consultant noted.

On the obstacles that could hamper this stage, Bahbari said: “The most dangerous factor in the fight against COVID-19 is the complete disregard of precautions, which could lead to the fast transmission of the virus.”

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