Friday, April 10, 2020

Why we are social distancing

From The Guardian, background research already revealing how some of the COVID-19 hots spots became so. This set of stories helps to provide some of the simple events that happened before the social distance awareness was created to fight the COVID-19 virus.

"A hundred days after a Chinese government website announced the discovery of a “pneumonia of unknown cause”, it has become clearer that the dynamics behind the virus’s rapid expansion across the globe has relied heavily on such “cluster effects”.

Each of the countries most heavily hit by the pandemic has reported similar stories of social, cultural or religious gatherings where large numbers spent numerous hours in close company – holding hands, kissing, sharing drinks from the same glass – which then turbo-charged the spread of the pandemic.

“One pattern we are seeing across the globe is that wherever there was singing and dancing, the virus spread more rapidly,” said Prof Hendrik Streeck, a virologist at the University of Bonn whose team of researchers has spent the last week carrying out the first “Covid-19 case cluster study” in Heinsberg.

“Most infections didn’t take place in supermarkets or restaurants,” Streeck said of his preliminary findings. In Heinsberg, his team of coronavirus detectives could find scant evidence of the virus being transmitted via the surfaces of door handles, smart phones or other objects."
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