I am reminded that the world is an island and all inhabitants are interconnected. This is represented by the view of the world as seen from the International Space Station.

This pandemic is an example of the “butterfly effect” in action.  The idea that small changes, even the movement of butterfly’s wings, can build to have large effects.

The world is awash with fake news and the medical perspective on the pandemic by its very nature continues to evolve.

This is why I have been “taking time” * to sift through the information flow in order to filter out the noise of social media and synthesise informed medical opinions and facts.

I would like to share with you what have I learnt so far:

  • At some time all of us are likely to be exposed to the coronavirus and that the impact on each individual is likely to be different.
  • If you are under age 65 and adhere to a healthy lifestyle the risks of an adverse outcome is very low.
  • If you are over 65 there are ways to lower your risk of an adverse outcome from coronavirus.
  • If you have an autoimmune rheumatological condition you are not necessarily at an added risk.
  • If you are taking medication for a rheumatological condition you are not at an added risk, except if you are taking high dose prednisolone ( greater than 10 mg/day – If you fit into this category you need sound medical advice).
  • Sub-optimal health particularly insulin resistance, diabetes, obesity, hypertension, low vitamin D levels, poor sleep and chronic stress can adversely impact the outcome once infected.
  • There is as yet no definite evidence but I am confident we will learn that lifestyle factors matter and influence the outcome.
  •  The transmission of the virus is mostly by respiratory droplets which is why there is a high incidence of infection in churches, synagogues and mosques.   Loud talking and singing promote the spread of the coronavirus.
  • “Smart” distancing is smart especially in confined indoor spaces with reduced airflow.  There is minimal if any transmission between people when outside or in an environment where there is good airflow.
  • The risk of transmission from touching surfaces is low.
  • Washing hands regularly is essential.  Aim for 5-10 times per day.
  • The length of exposure matters. It seems that if you are in contact with an infected person for less than 15 minutes the transmission is negligible. The lock-down may have contributed significantly to transmission among members of a household.
  • If you have an infection, wearing a mask substantially reduces your risk of passing it on.
  • There has been a tangible increase in stress and here in Australia alcohol consumption and domestic violence have risen exponentially. In the US, the purchase of guns is at an all-time high.
  • Australia like most other countries were unprepared for the current health and economic challenges and this is an opportunity now to prepare for a different future.
  • Our current medical model of treating sickness rather than to prevent and slow the onset of diseases is being challenged at all levels.  In the UK the relationship between obesity and the risk of death from coronavirus is now obvious and the government has finally noticed.
  • Human ingenuity is being displayed in hospitals and research labs around the world and the strength of this collaboration sustains my optimism for resolution of the impacts of this pandemic.

 

Taking Time

Now more than ever is the time to implement daily personal practices to reduce stress and anxiety.  This has inspired a new Lewis Institute audio pathway (10.11) designed to assist you to gain insights into how to slow things down, gain new perspectives, and restore peace, calm and inner balance.