Use common sense, we’ll get through this

Jim Clark

I know you’re scared. I am too.

You’re not sleeping much. Neither am I.

Those two statements let you know you’re not alone.

Having said that I’d like to give you some statistics and what’s on the horizon which I hope will give you hope.

On March 24, Mississippi had 377 cases of COVID-19.

The population of Mississippi is 2,976,149. Lee County had 14 cases on that same date. Lee County’s population is 82,910. Nuff said.

Worldwide there have been, as of Monday, 353,609 Coronavirus cases. Of those, 226,278 (95%) are considered mild; 11,298 (5%) serious; 100,616 (87%) recovered and were discharged and there were 15,417 (13%) deaths.

To me, those numbers are a lot more encourageing then they are dismal.

In the United States, again as of Monday, there are 35,121 total cases of the virus. Of those, 795 are considered serious.

The rest are considered mild and stand a good chance of recovery.

I hate it when the national media paints everything as gloom and doom.

Of course, I am going to take the threat serious. I’m sure you will too. If you think you have it, find out for sure — but medical professionals ask that you have these symptoms before going to be tested: a fever of 100.4 or greater and severe cough or chest pain. The test is offered at Med Plus Urgent Care in Tupelo. You should call before you go 662-841-0002.

The first step to getting past this crisis is to identify everyone who has been infected. Keep in mind the numbers will rise in the next few weeks. Once that number reaches its peak ... guess what — those numbers will start to go down.

By the way, I’m not the only one saying this — Michael Levitt, a Nobel laureate and Stanford biophysicist, was credited for correctly calling early on that China would get through the worst of its devastating outbreak before many other health experts predicted.

On Jan. 31, China had 46 new deaths compared with 42 the day before, which Levitt recognized as a slowing rate of growth. So he sent out an optimistic report.

“This suggests that the rate of increase in number of the deaths will slow down even more over the next week,” he said in a note widely shared on Chinese social media. Levitt, who won the 2013 Nobel Prize in chemistry, also said the number of deaths would soon start decreasing every day.

On Monday, China did have some new cases but the majority of those were “imported infections” in other words, people who came in from somewhere else.

Levitt feels the same about what will happen in the United States. “What we need is to control the panic... we’re going to be fine,” he said, adding that the data doesn’t support the gloom and doom epidemiologists have been warning about.

Levitt said the majority of headlines spread fear, but he sticks to a brief and simple message “The coronavirus pandemic is not the end of the world.”

Experts are also thinking coronavirus may disappear when spring brings warmer weather, similar to a pattern seen with the seasonal flu.

While warmer and wetter weather might not kill the virus — experts say new preliminary research suggests such conditions could hamper the ability of the virus to infect people. — if that’s the case this stuff doesn’t stand a chance in Mississippi.

In the meanwhile, social distancing is fine. Don’t go to an event, if you can find one, or even church.

But don’t hide in your closet either — if you want to buy a car, buy a shirt, get some flowers or plant a tree call local businesses and I guarantee you they’ll find a way to help you. Call LOCAL. We are in this together.

Come by the Courier and buy an ad, but call ahead 401-0066.

I’ll meet you here. I might not shake your hand, but I’ll sit down with you without my hazmat suit.

So, yes this is serious. To protect yourself, clean your hands frequently with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.

We’re scared because there is no specific treatment for disease caused by a novel coronavirus. However, many of the symptoms can be treated with things we’ve heard our whole life, bed rest, keep warm, drink plenty of liquids and take a hot shower to help ease a sore throat and cough. In other words use common sense.

Finally, pray. I’m a firm believer in prayer. I’m 100 percent sure God hears our prayers. He may not answer the way we think He should or it may not be on our time table but He will be will us all the way and we will get through this.

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