5 Uplifting Coronavirus Facts to Bring Optimism Back into Your Life
Yes, we are still in a public health crisis, but there is some light at the end of the tunnel.
The coronavirus outbreak and the nationwide lockdown that's come with it have been very difficult for everyone. We know life is tough, but there are some tiny slivers of silver linings that can provide even a little bit of light at the end of this dark tunnel in which we find ourselves. While the U.S. is still very much in the middle of a public health risk, the likes of which we have never seen before, amid the endless dire news reports there are a number of recent developments to bring some glimmers of hope to our current situation. Here are five coronavirus facts that'll help you see the light. And if you could use a distraction from all things COVID-19 right now, check out these 33 Feel-Good Photos to Distract You from the World.
The rise of new cases has either ended or statistically flattened in many coronavirus hotspots.
Roughly three weeks ago, the White House Coronavirus Task Force issued guidelines that included social distancing and staying at home for 15 days. Two weeks later, these guidelines were extended another month and people were encouraged to wear masks or face coverings when outside.
Not only have these guidelines broadly been followed, but they appear to have worked at "flattening of the curve." In hotspot areas like New York City, Seattle, and even New Orleans, the rise of new cases has either ended or statistically flattened. This is not a reason to stop following the guidelines, of course, but it is good news that widespread efforts appear to be paying off. Cautious optimism is still optimism!
New projections for COVID-19-related deaths are up to 75 percent lower than initial numbers.
On Mar. 31, the White House Coronavirus Task Force announced that the projected death toll for U.S. citizens would come in between 100,000 to 240,000 as a best case scenario. It was a striking moment that led to the extension of the stay-at-home guidelines for another 30 days. The updated projections, however, are now much lower, at 60,000. Still, a striking and awful number of deaths, but it appears that national sacrifice and adherence to the guidelines will save up to 180,000 lives.
Human testing on vaccines has started.
One of the bigger stressors about the coronavirus pandemic is the lack of a vaccine. There is real concern that until a vaccine or cure is discovered, then we will continue to be susceptible to the deadly COVID-19 contagion. But three months ago, when the coronavirus first emerged, a number of biotech companies started developing a vaccine. And two have now begun testing on humans, according to the FDA. Testing takes awhile, and the broad release of a vaccine is a ways away, but knowing that there are human tests beginning is definitely good news. And for more on how long it'll be before we have a vaccine for everyone, check out 13 Common Coronavirus Questions—Answered by Experts.
Multiple people over the age of 100 have survived COVID-19.
Among the most susceptible to the coronavirus are the immunocompromised and the elderly among us. And while people of many ages have tragically succumbed to the deadly contagion, it's senior citizens who have taken the brunt of the virus. But there are a handful of really heartwarming stories of individuals who are 100 years of age or older who have been diagnosed with the coronavirus and emerged healthy.
Take Bill Lapschies, for example. The World World II vet was one of the first people in Oregon to be diagnosed with COVID-19. But, thanks to his doctor at Edward C. Allworth Veterans' Home in Lebanon, Oregon, he lived to see his 104th birthday. "This could have easily gone another way," his doctor told Oregon Public Broadcasting.
We have a newfound respect for health care workers.
Amid the many dark headlines that have come with this global pandemic, some really beautiful trends have emerged. Not only is there a growing sense of community and connectedness in many places, but there is renewed respect and appreciation for public health care workers like nurses, doctors, and even administrators on the front lines. Many communities have begun a daily tradition of literally applauding public health care workers from their homes every evening at 7 p.m. If you haven't seen this in person, watching videos of the movement will definitely bring a smile to your face.