The COVID-19 pandemic: Emerging perspectives and future trends
World is living on the edge. The human cost of COVID pandemic could be extraordinary. We find ourselves in a time of great economic, social, and medical uncertainty. The pandemic demands action on many fronts, from prevention to testing to treatment. We need to create simple, cheap, more accessible testing for SARS-CoV-2. A faster way has to be developed to identify antibodies that neutralize the virus. More than 100 vaccines for the SARS-CoV-2 are at various stages of development. Some six groups have already begun injecting formulations into volunteers in safety trials; others have started testing in animals. The biggest challenge is to determine which vaccine is ideal. Reason and science have to guide us. There is urgent need to critically appraise evidence in deciding how to treat patients. We need a drug or combination of drugs that work. Remdesivir has generated hope. It may prove to be a magic bullet. Countries like Taiwan, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, New Zealand have done exceptionally well to contain the spread of COVID-19. It is widely believed that during the pandemic treatment suffers. Patients with diseases like cancer, diabetes, renal failure, CAD and pregnant women need special attention. As the pandemic pushes up levels of hunger among the global poor, governments must prevent devastating nutrition and health consequences for children missing out on school meals amid school closures. Nations will have endemic SARS-CoV-2 infection for the foreseeable future. A structured and well-coordinated approach is critical for tackling this global crisis.
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