RD Heritage’s Robert Davis Examines Past Pandemics and Potential Future Shaped By COVID-19
Historically, pandemics have proven to be a catalyst for colossal change.
London’s Victoria Embankment, a modernized sewerage system, was designed after a series of catastrophic cholera outbreaks in the 19th century, one of which reached London and left more than 10,000 people dead. In 430 BC, the Athens plague had a sweeping effect on the city’s laws and identity, while the Black Death in the Middle Ages rearranged the balance of class power in European societies. More recently, a string of Ebola epidemics throughout sub-Saharan Africa enlightened the public to the expanding interconnectedness of excessively globalized cities.
With uncertainty and questions surrounding the current COVID-19 epidemic, Robert Davis, co-founder of the RD Heritage Group in Las Vegas, Nevada, explores the viewpoints of people towards previous pandemics and possible expectations in the aftermath of the coronavirus.
Swine Flu Of 2009
From the spring of 2009 to the spring of 2010, the H1N1 swine flu infected up to 1.4 billion people worldwide and claimed between 151,700 to 575,400 lives, statistics gathered by the Centers for Disease Protection and Control revealed.
This new strain of H1N1 originated in Mexico, spreading to the rest of the world so rapidly that the World Health Organization declared it a pandemic in June 2009. April 24, 2009, nine days following the earliest detection of H1N1, the CDC uploaded genetic sequences of the virus to a public database and commenced the development of a vaccine.
The U.S. proclaimed the swine flu as a public health emergency 11 days after the first confirmed local case in 2009. Between April 2009 and April 2010, the U.S. encountered 60.8 million cases of swine flu, more than 274,000 hospitalizations and almost 12,500 deaths (a mortality rate in the area of 0.02 percent), the CDC estimates documented.
Although H1N1 was classified as a pandemic, societies failed to heed its warning simply because millions of people were not ultimately killed, Robert Davis notes. Perhaps the fact that mankind’s only past H1N1 pandemic was the Spanish flu of 1918, which took millions of lives and remains the deadliest pandemic of all time, gave people the false belief that the worst was behind them.
COVID-19’s Resulting Repercussions
Far more contagious, widespread and deadly than the swine flu of over a decade ago or the SARS threat of 2003, COVID-19 is certain to leave a universal, devastating imprint on the minds of all, Robert Davis of RD Heritage Group says. Overall, the current global number of cases is currently 1,018,150 and the death toll is at 53,251.
Despite being in the early stages of resisting the disease, the economy is already experiencing many disturbances: one in five people in the United States have been deprived of working hours or jobs, hotels are empty, restaurants and various other businesses are being pushed to close, and airlines are cancelling flights.
Inequalities will only grow, as people with lower forms of income will be particularly overwhelmed by the social distancing measures and, possibly, are more likely to have chronic health conditions that heighten their risk of severe infections.
COVID-19 is directly affecting everyone, something that could not be stated about major epidemics of recent decades and everyday life is suffering from it. People are testing positive, dealing with quarantined periods and losing loved ones, whether they are privileged citizens or working-class individuals, says Robert Davis. Hospitals, which are under-staffed, ill-equipped in essential needs, and exhaustively overworked are now forced to make grave decisions on who, among the COVID-19 patients, is worthy of medical treatment and who must be sacrificed.
Robert Davis Looks Forward
Much like the world concentrated on counter terrorism after the events of 9/11, once the COVID-19 chapter is complete, the attention will be on public health, from its funding and domestic production of medical supplies, to how many students apply for public-health programs, notes Robert Davis.
As of this moment, the U.S. tops the number of known cases of COVID-19, ahead of Italy and China, where the illness originated. As the U.S. faces the crisis head-on; however, other countries are beginning to stabilize. China is almost entirely resuming all normal operations and the U.K. is showing a downward trend of new cases. Only time will tell how long the global crisis will last. At the end of the day, this is sure to be a test for humanity, says Robert Davis of RD Heritage.