Coronavirus: Experts feel that it will never go away and is here to stay for long!

As the days are ticking by, doctors are coming to learn more and more about the behavior of the deadly coronavirus. The virus which has killed more than 700k people and affected over 18.8 million globally seems to be here to stay for long. The ‘uninvited guest’ does not want to go and doctors now fear that the deadly virus will never go. It will continue to circulate in this world.

Coronavirus and its duration on Earth

The deadly coronavirus has created a havoc on Earth. It has affected innumerable people and caused chronic organ problems and even death in many. It is continuing to do a comeback in countries which thought that they had overcome the virus.

Coronavirus [Source: Hospimedica]
Earlier, doctors and scientists believed that like SARS of 2003-2004, this virus would stay for a year and a half and then disappear from the world. But no, the cases continue to increase and spread across the globe. One thing is becoming more and more certain now: the virus is not going away anytime soon.

The transmission rate of the virus

SARS started in late 2002 and infected around 8000 people. But intense isolation, contact tracing, and quarantine helped to eradicate it. In 2004, it disappeared from humans. But it is not known whether it continues to be with some intermediate animal host waiting for an opportunity to jump back to humans.

But COVID-19 is different from SARS virus. COVID-19 seems to spread at a faster rate and there are a number of asymptomatic cases as well which lead to community transmission of infection.

Coronavirus (Source: TOI)

Stephen Morse, an epidemiologist at Columbia University states:

“It’s very unlikely we’re going to be able to declare the kind of victory we did over SARS,”

But experts feel that even if the pandemic ends at some point after infecting a certain number of people and with use of vaccination, it will continue to circulate at lowered levels in the world. It will wax and wane with some outbreaks here and there.

So what is the future of COVID-19 like?

Yonatan Grad, an infectious-disease researcher at Harvard feels that the future of the virus depends on the strength and duration of immunity in the population at large. It the immunity lasts for less than a year, there could be smaller outbreaks every year after this pandemic ends. And if the immunity in a person lasts for over two years, peaks would occur every other year. Yonatan added:

“The faster protection goes away, the more difficult for any project to try to move toward eradication,”

Coronavirus (Source: AHA journals)

Also, if immunity is short-lived, vaccines once developed would have to be given every year to boost up immunity.

Additionally, if one feels that the virus is not here and seems to have been eradicated it could be in some animal host. And the first chance it gets, it would again be back in humans. So as regards COVID-19,  the future currently looks bleak!!!

Also, read Coronavirus mutations has led to increase in speed of transmission but no impact on virulence or fatality!