Connect with us

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Coronavirus myths: Eight things you should probably already know

Thaiger

Published 

 on 

Coronavirus myths: Eight things you should probably already know | Thaiger

Two months after the first cases came to the attention of the world, a lot more is known about the coronavirus, aka. Covid-19. Here’s a few well established myths and a few scientific facts.

MYTH: ‘Face masks don’t work’

Wearing a face mask is no guarantee that you won’t be infected. However, masks are effective at capturing droplets and larger airborne particles in the seconds after an infected patient has coughed or spluttered – the main transmission route of coronavirus. Some studies estimate a roughly five-times protection versus no barrier at all.

Within health care facilities, special respirators called “N95 respirators” have been shown to greatly reduce the spread of the virus among medical staff. People require training to properly fit N95 respirators around their noses, cheeks and chins to ensure that no air can sneak around the edges of the mask; and wearers must also learn to check the equipment for damage after each use. These are very different than the flimsy paper masks people walk around with.

If you are likely to be in close contact with someone infected, a properly-worn mask limitss the chance of the disease being passed on. If you’re just walking around town and not in close contact with others, wearing a mask is unlikely to make any difference. The cheap, paper masks, often passed out for free by authorities are close to useless.

MYTH: The virus was made in a lab by humans

No evidence suggests that the virus is man-made. But the conspiracy theory has been a popular piece of fake news that keeps popping up in rubbish tabloid and social media. SARS-CoV-2 closely resembles two other coronaviruses that have triggered outbreaks in recent decades, SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, and all three viruses seem to have originated in bats. Unless there is a gang of super-bats that have conspired to create Covid-19 in their secret cave-lab, there is absolutely no evidence that this has either occurred or would even been possible.

In short, the characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 fall in line with what we know about other naturally occurring coronaviruses that made the jump from animals to people.

MYTH: The virus is just a mutation of the common cold

Wrong. Coronavirus is a large family of viruses that includes many different diseases. All five of the known ‘flu’ coronaviruses have spiky projections on their surfaces and utilise so-called “spike proteins” to infect host cells. However, the four cold coronaviruses – named 229E, NL63, OC43 and HKU1 – all utilise humans as their primary hosts. SARS-CoV-2 shares about 90% of its genetic material with coronaviruses that infect bats, which suggests that the virus originated in bats and later hopped to humans.

Evidence suggests that the virus passed through an intermediate animal before infecting humans. Similarly, the SARS virus jumped from bats to civets (cat-like nocturnal mammals) on its way into people, whereas MERS infected camels before spreading to humans – livescience.com

MYTH: ‘It is no worse or more dangerous than a normal flu’

Many individuals who get coronavirus will experience nothing worse than normal flu symptoms – sniffling, coughing, congestion and felling of illness. But the overall profile of the disease, including its mortality rate, could end up reflecting a more serious profile. This week, a World Health Organisation spokesperson, Bruce Aylward, who led an international mission to China to learn about the virus, noted that cases of the disease are now well exposed, it’s not just ‘the tip of the iceberg”.

If borne out by further testing, this could mean that current estimates of a roughly 1-2% fatality rate are accurate. This would show Covid-19 about 10 times more deadly than currently understood seasonal flus, which are estimated to kill between 300,000 and 660,000 around the world each year.

MYTH: ‘Covid-19 only kills the elderly’

Most people who are not elderly and do not have underlying health conditions will not become critically ill from Covid-19. That’s broadly true given the current cases studied in detail. But Covid-19 still has a higher chance of leading to serious respiratory symptoms, or potentially death, when compared to seasonal flu. There are other at-risk groups – health workers, who are more likely to be exposed to the virus.

The active precautions by communities around the world, to contain the situation in their immediate environment, will automatically be more likely to protect potential at-risk groups, like children. But, statistically, the majority of deaths have been in the elderly and in cases where there have been underlying causes. But there are children and previously healthy adults among the list of people who have succumbed to the virus.

MYTH: ‘You would have to be with an infected person for 10 minutes’

For flu, some hospital guidelines define exposure as being within 2 metres of an infected person who sneezes or coughs for 10 minutes or longer. However, it is possible to be infected with shorter interactions (even seconds) or by picking the virus up from contaminated surfaces (although this is thought to be a less common route of transmission).

MYTH: ‘A vaccine will be ready soon’

Scientists were quick to respond to this new strain of coronavirus, in the same family as the SERS and MERS viruses. Development os a vaccine, helped by the early discovery of the genetic sequence by Chinese researchers, is progressing much quicker than in the past. But a viable vaccine could be a long way off.

Several teams, separately around the globe, are now testing possible candidate vaccines in animal experiments. But the trials required before a commercial vaccine could be commercially rolled out are still at least a year away. Early human trials will also have to wait for possible side-effects and full evaluation.

MYTH: You can catch coronavirus eating at Chinese restaurants

Yes, some people actually believe this. By that logic, you’d also have to avoid Italian, Korean, Japanese and Iranian restaurants, given that those countries have also been facing an outbreak.

You have no more chance of getting infected by coronavirus, or anything else for that matter, at any Chinese restaurant, than being bitten by a giraffe in a telephone box.

I’ve had a dodgy Sweet & Sour Pork once and a Special Fried Rice that wasn’t very special, but I never caught coronavirus.


Early in the coronavirus news cycle there were many, many fake and invalid claims made about the virus. We listed a few HERE.

Keep in contact with Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following Thaiger.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Avatar

    bruce

    Sunday, March 1, 2020 at 10:15 pm

    I’m not sure if you are serious or just complying with the government.
    The Wuhan china virus is now called covid19 by The WHO .
    There is in fact known evidence that the virus was engineered, possibly for research purposes.
    Further there is a credible accusation that it may have been stolen from a lab in Canada and shipped to china.
    I would not say the matter has been conclusively settled unless you believe the chicoms.
    But to assert that there’s no credible evidence about the possible engineering of the virus is itself fake news.
    Chucking terms like fake news and conspiracy theory around undermines a search for the truth when the powers that be are threatened by the truth.
    If I was a betting man with 20 plus years of experience in food process labs (and I am); I’d bet it’s not a naturally occurring mutation.
    I have been extensively trained on cross contamination issues and this is way outside any known normal parameters.

    Btw, I really enjoy your stories.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



Find more SE Asian News courtesy of Thaiger.

Broke? Find employment in Southeast Asia with JobCute Thailand. Rich? Invest in real estate across Asia with FazWaz Property Group. Even book medical procedures worldwide with MyMediTravel, all powered by DB Ventures.

Thailand's largest online portal for news and information.

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Cambodia threatens jail for Covid-19 quarantine violations

Avatar

Published

on

Cambodia threatens jail for Covid-19 quarantine violations | Thaiger
PHOTO: PM Hun Sen imposes harsh Covid-19 restrictions

In the face of expanding Covid-19 infections in Cambodia, Prime Minister Hun Sen has warned that violators of quarantine may face prison sentences, and government workers could be fired if they don’t get vaccines. More than 1,000 new Coronavirus cases were diagnosed in the last 2 days along, nearly 25% of the total cases since the pandemic began. The government has forbidden out-of-province travel and implemented evening curfews in the main city of Phnom Penh. They even shut down all the tourist attractions including the world-famous Angkor Wat temple complex.

Face masks are already mandatory now in Phnom Penh, with fines up to US $250 for anyone caught violating the order. But PM Hun Sen, himself having had a close brush with Covid-19 months ago, has imposed a 2-week quarantine and has made it clear that punishment for any rule-breakers will be harsh and swift. The government has already enacted a strict bill to curb the spread of Covid-19 in Cambodia, with prison terms of up to 20 years for serious violators. In an address broadcast on state-run television, he promised a “quick trial’.

“People who break Covid measures must be sentenced, I accept being called a dictator, but I will also be admired for protecting my people’s lives.”

Cambodia began Covid-19 vaccination in February, with a million citizens already receiving at least their first of two injections. In a country of 16 million, that 6% is a healthy start for their vaccination programme. The Prime Minister also declared vaccination mandatory for all state officials and members of the military. He asserted that their job was on the line if they failed to comply.

Cambodia had done well with low Covid-19 infection numbers during the pandemic, but in February, the virus tore through the Chinese ex-pat community, with the outbreak causing a surge in infections proliferating across the country. The situation is worsening now, as hospitals in Phnom Penh are running out of beds and the government is converting large halls and local schools into medical centres for mildly afflicted patients.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Keep in contact with Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following Thaiger.

Continue Reading

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Nightlife plays major role in Covid-19 third wave

Avatar

Published

on

Nightlife plays major role in Covid-19 third wave | Thaiger
FILE PHOTO: Krystal Club Thonglor25 is one of many high-end clubs where Covid-19 spread

The current surge in Covid-19 infections now looks to be spread in large part by Thailand’s colourful nightlife, with more than 500 people contracting the more contagious UK variant (B117) of the Coronavirus. The government responded by closing all bars and entertainment venues in 41 provinces, but it may be too late to prevent a third wave of the pandemic. Many people now are critical, pointing to the first and second wave as harbingers of how the party nightlife can so easily transmit Covid-19.

At the beginning of the pandemic, partiers in Bangkok’s Thong Lor area began testing positive for Covid-19 last March. The Public Health Ministry instructed everyone to follow safety measures to prevent a big outbreak. The area is well known to be a hotspot for Bangkok’s wealthy elite and powerful with its multitude of high-end luxury clubs and bars.

A normal night has thousands of people roaming the streets into the late hours of the evening. But after infections started spreading, all nightlife was closed until July when Thailand overall had gained some control and contained the Coronavirus more successfully than most countries. In fact, it would be months before any new infections were diagnosed in the area.

While it’s commonly known that the next wave of Covid-19 in Thailand started mainly from migrant workers and low wage market workers, even the second round of infections was proliferated by people enjoying the nightlife around Thailand. There was a case of a woman in the North who went to several bars before knowing that she had contracted the virus in January, and, when the details of her bar-hopping were released, many customers of a bar she attended in Chiang Mai had already contracted Covid-19 as well. Meanwhile, in Bangkok, Techin “DJ Matoom” Ploypetch held a lavish all-night party in a luxury hotel in January. Facing criminal charges for violating Covid-19 restrictions, he has recovered from the virus himself but the party became a spreader event. None of these nightlife outbreaks stopped people from pouring back into the club scene as soon as it reopened in February.

Now Thailand is facing a massive shutdown with the threat of a third wave of Covid-19 inescapable. One major factor in the rapidly spreading infections is trendy evening entertainment venues around Bangkok, Phuket, and Pattaya among other areas. A 35-year-old man who contracted Covid-19 reported he had been partying in Thong Lor the month before. Testing clubgoers from bars and entertainment venues in the area revealed an outbreak of Covid-19 infections.

Krystal Club Thonglor25 gained attention as powerful politicians and the wealthy elite that frequent the club so often it’s nicknamed “Government House 2”. 1/3 of Thailand’s cabinet ministers are currently self-isolating and it was rumoured that the Transport Minister had gotten C0vid-19 from visiting the infamous Krystal Club, though rumours were later dispelled.

But growing anger has emerged towards the upscale party-going set, with the hashtag #thonglorpub trending across social media since Wednesday, and many people complaining as the country closes down entertainment venues for the next two weeks and maybe facing further lockdown procedures.

The bar and club scene is a hotspot for Covid clusters since social distancing and mask-wearing are rarely enforced, in poorly ventilated rooms with throngs of tightly packed people. A list has emerged of high society hot spots where anyone in attendance in the past few weeks is being requested to get Covid-19 tests right away after customers at each has tested positive for covid.

  • Krystal Club Thonglor25
  • Bar Bar Bar,
  • Ekamai Beer House,
  • Emerald Thonglor13
  • Dirty Bar
  • Bottoms up Thonglor
  • AINU Hokkaido lzakaya & Bar
  • the Cassette Music Bar Ekamai
  • 63 Music House Ekamai

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

Keep in contact with Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following Thaiger.

Continue Reading

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Big Covid-19 numbers today: 789 new infections, 1 death

Avatar

Published

on

Big Covid-19 numbers today: 789 new infections, 1 death | Thaiger
FILE PHOTO: A surge in new infections as people are tested following nightlife clusters.

789 new Covid-19 infections and 1 death were reported today by the CCSA. The death, a 68 year old Thai man from Nakhon Pathom, had died April 4 but was yesterday confirmed as dying from complications from Coronavirus. Only 8 infections were international arrivals, with 522 local infections and 259 diagnosed today through contact tracing.

The international infections were Thai and foreigners and included 3 arriving from Russia and 1 each from the US, UK, Oman, India, and Canada. 33 former patients are now fully recovered from the virus and discharged in the past 24 hours.

Earlier today 17 new infections were identified in Phuket and will go into tomorrow’s official national count. This brings the island’s total new infections this week to 43, almost all of them a result of an influx of Bangkok party-goers to events last weekend.

This new jump in Covid-19 brings the total infections in Thailand to 31,658 – c28,463 local cases and 3,195 internationally imported cases, 17,000+ of those cases were diagnosed from proactive testing. 28,161 have been released as ‘recovered’ with 2,645 people currently undergoing treatment and 97 total deaths.

Thailand is now 113th on the list of most cases globally, with the USA’s 31.8 million infections still more than the next 3 countries combined – Brazil with 13.37 million, India with 13.2 million, and France with 4.98 million. Russia rounds out the top 5 with 4.62 million infections.

The global total is up almost 800,000 to 135.29 million cases with 23.3 million active cases, just over 100,000 of which are considered in critical condition. 108,86 million have recovered from the virus, and 2.92 million have died, including 13,268 today.

Big Covid-19 numbers today: 789 new infections, 1 death | News by Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation Thailand

Keep in contact with Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following Thaiger.

Continue Reading
Tourism officials slash Songkran travel expectations by half | Thaiger
Chiang Mai18 hours ago

Tourism officials slash Songkran travel expectations by half

Thailand News Today | Bangkok nightspot Covid clusters, Tesco/CP merger goes to court | April 5 | Thaiger
Thailand6 days ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok nightspot Covid clusters, Tesco/CP merger goes to court | April 5

Thai Airways cuts another 4,250 staff, offering them early retirement | Thaiger
Transport20 hours ago

Thai Airways cuts another 4,250 staff, offering them early retirement

10 rebel groups in Myanmar throw their support behind anti-coup protesters | VIDEO | Thaiger
Myanmar7 days ago

10 rebel groups in Myanmar throw their support behind anti-coup protesters | VIDEO

Firefighters’ bodies retrieved, 100,000 baht to families | Thaiger
Hot News6 days ago

Firefighters’ bodies retrieved, 100,000 baht to families

Immigration police arrest Frenchman on drug charges, 3 other foreigners for overstay | Thaiger
Crime3 days ago

Immigration police arrest Frenchman on drug charges, 3 other foreigners for overstay

Weekend party event in Phuket reports positive Covid attendee | Thaiger
Events5 days ago

Weekend party event in Phuket reports positive Covid attendee

Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan | Thaiger
Business5 days ago

Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan

Nightlife shut down in 3 Bangkok districts following rise in Covid numbers | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)5 days ago

Nightlife shut down in 3 Bangkok districts following rise in Covid numbers

Police chief orders staff to work from home after 42 officers test positive | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

Police chief orders staff to work from home after 42 officers test positive

Bangkok prepares to open field hospital as officials warn of a rapid rise in infections | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 days ago

Bangkok prepares to open field hospital as officials warn of a rapid rise in infections

Some Bangkok international schools close following rise of Covid-19 cases in the area | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 days ago

Some Bangkok international schools close following rise of Covid-19 cases in the area

Thailand allows entry to 11 groups of travellers, cuts quarantine down for those vaccinated | Thaiger
Thailand6 days ago

Thailand allows entry to 11 groups of travellers, cuts quarantine down for those vaccinated

Leading Thai virologist warns of third wave, says herd immunity will take 2 years at current vaccination rate | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)4 days ago

Leading Thai virologist warns of third wave, says herd immunity will take 2 years at current vaccination rate

Thai Health Minister pictured without mask, sitting next to infected Transport Minister | Thaiger
Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 days ago

Thai Health Minister pictured without mask, sitting next to infected Transport Minister

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4 | Thaiger
Thailand1 month ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO | Thaiger
Tourism1 month ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2 | Thaiger
Phuket1 month ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO | Thaiger
Tourism2 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23 | Thaiger
Thailand2 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO | Thaiger
Tourism2 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8 | Thaiger
Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Follow Thaiger by email:

Trending