COVID-19, how it started, and how far along have we come
COVID-19 basically changed the world as we once knew it. People are now social distancing, wearing masks, having to limit their activities with friends and families, and have changed schools. Currently, we have 26.9 million cases in the United States and 460 thousand deaths, that go up daily.
Initially, most people thought this would be like many other viruses that have come to the United States, like the Bird Flu (H5N1) or (Swine Flu) theH1N1 virus. Both of these viruses are now considered part of the influenza family, and the panic is no longer around. The COVID-19 panic has lasted much longer due to the higher infectious rates and death numbers.
Within the first 6 months, we saw changes that none of us would have ever expected to see. The virus starts in January, then is discovered in the United States by the end of January. Airports start screening passengers a bit more. Global air travel becomes more restricted, people now having to quarantine for 2 weeks upon arrival from another country.
The CDC announces COVID-19 is becoming a pandemic. Trump declares a national emergency with released billions of dollars of federal money to help fight the spread of the disease and help the American people. Hospitals are overwhelmed with COVID cases and the death tolls, no longer let people in who do not need to be there.
States start closing down, causing a huge loss of income to businesses and families. Senate passes the CARES Act which Trump signs into law to help those that are struggling most. In April there was the hope of starting to reopen the economy, and when face masks started becoming recommended.
As deaths continue to rise more preventative measures are put into place. Schools start closing, social distancing, wearing masks, limiting social interactions, and it’s recommended to limit celebrations such as holidays and birthdays.
In the last 6 months, more changes start to arrive. Studies say that in March 80% of cases went undiagnosed. A White House coronavirus task force is created to address the rising cases in the south. States put a halt to re-opening and starts enforcing the mask mandate.
CDC changes the way that coronavirus can be transmitted to viral as well as airborne. The daily cases are still rising at an alarmingly high rate. Another bill is introduced to help families struggling called the HEALS act.
The FDA approves the saliva test which is less invasive and you can get the result in less than 3 hours. In August coronavirus is the third leading cause of death in the US. And of course, because the COVID-19 wasn’t enough a new strain arrived. Vaccinations are being talked about with hopes of being distributed quickly.
A lot of vaccinations have since been approved and the process of providing vaccinations has started already. One of the main focus now is to create a proper and efficient vaccination distribution system.
All of this happened in 2020, and it looks like 2021 is going to be just as interesting.