- Nov 26, 2017
- US of A
Positive Updates on the COVID Outbreaks From Around the World
Mar 23, 2020
Last week, we published a list of ten positive updates on the COVID-19 outbreaks from around the world.
Since the article has been viewed millions of times, we thought we would go ahead and publish another round-up of optimistic occurrences to keep your spirits up.
So here is another list of reasons why the global situation is not as bad as the mainstream media might have you think.
1) World Health Organization (WHO) Officials Say There Are Now 20 Coronavirus Vaccines in Development
Although there are still a number of logistical and financial hurdles that will need to be overcome in the race to deliver a COVID-19 vaccine to the public, WHO representatives say they are working with scientists around the world to test and develop 20 different vaccines.
“The acceleration of this process is really truly dramatic in terms of what we’re able to do, building on work that started with SARS, that started with MERS and now is being used for COVID-19 ,” Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, the technical lead for WHO’s emergencies program, said at a press conference in Geneva last week, according to CNBC.
The collective body of research is particularly “remarkable” since the vaccines are in development just 60 days after a number of international scientists decoded the virus’s genetic sequence and shared it with the rest of the world.
One of the vaccines—which is already being tested on a number of American volunteers in Seattle—has already illustrated the “unprecedented speed” with which the medical community is working together to develop a vaccine.
2) From Individuals to Countries and World Governments–Everybody is Sharing Face MasksA #USask research team and collaborating scientists from across the country have been awarded $1 million to develop animal models and test vaccine candidates for effectiveness and safety against the new #coronavirus. @VIDOInterVac VIDO-InterVac-led research team at USask awarded almost $1M to fight new coronavirus
— U of Saskatchewan (@usask) March 6, 2020
Not only is this French fashion designer making her own face masks and giving them away for free, she is showing how other people can make their own as well. In North Carolina, a textile mill is gearing up to start making 10 million masks per week. A number of international fashion companies have also redirected their manufacturing teams to produce face masks as well.
Multiple businesses and schools have donated their recently rediscovered face mask treasure troves to hospitals in need. Other major tech companies such as Facebook and Apple are donating millions of masks and medical supplies to US healthcare facilities. Chinese companies are passing on their own stashes of face masks to European countries newly impacted by the virus. Taiwan is reportedly donating 100,000 masks to the United States.
Even medical TV shows have donated their medical supply props to North American hospitals in need.
File photo by Senior Airman Nancy Hooks 3) As American Cities Close Up Amidst Outbreaks, Pollution Plummets
The United States is now benefiting from the same environmental silver lining to the pandemics as China and Italy: as cities encourage self-isolation, air pollution is plummeting.
Over the course of the last few weeks, satellite imaging has revealed significant reductions in air pollution—particularly across California, Seattle, and New York City.
According to CNN, environmental scientists are estimating that the improvement in air quality could collectively save as many as 75,000 people from dying prematurely.
Photo by Descartes Labs 4) As Physicians Worry About Potential Ventilator Shortages, Researchers Develop Several Low-Cost Solutions
In a stroke of genius, one scientist from the University of Minnesota says he went “full-on MacGyver” to build a makeshift ventilator in a matter of hours. Although his team has revised his design over the course of several prototypes with the hopes of eventually submitting it for FDA approval, he says that the inexpensive ventilator is one that he “would be comfortable with someone [using to] take care of me in an ICU or in an operating room.”
The compassionate medical research continues in Italy as a pair of engineers have taken it upon themselves to 3D-print free respirator parts for their local hospitals. As of last week, the Isinnova startup engineers told Forbes that they had successfully printed more than 100 parts.
Meanwhile, MIT scientists are publishing open-source instructions and research on how to build inexpensive ventilators.
“We are releasing this material with the intent to provide those with the ability to make or manufacture ventilators, the tools needed to do so in a manner that seeks to ensure patient safety,” they wrote. “Clinicians viewing this site can provide input and expertise and report on their efforts to help their patients.”
Isinnova’s Christian Fracassi and Alessandro Romaioli—Photo by Isinnova
From vaccines being tested around the world to a Nobel prize-winning biophysicist predicting recovery, here are some good updates on the COVID-19 pandemic.