New Zealand’s Emphatic Covid-19 Approach
“In New Zealand, investigators traced an outbreak to a 50-second window of exposure. The case might be a lesson for countries contemplating a future with no Covid-19,” WIRED’s science editor Matt Reynolds reports.
“Authorities investigating a tiny outbreak in September 2020 traced this moment to a 50-second window of time when one infected person likely breathed infectious particles into a hotel corridor, leading to two people in the room next door contracting Covid-19,” Reynolds writes for the magazine. “Even more proof that, given the right conditions, Sars-CoV-2 only needs a tiny window of opportunity to create an outbreak.
“This single transmission poses a dilemma for public health authorities in countries where case rates are falling and lockdown measures are easing. When cases are low enough, should we track the source of each outbreak and do everything we can to stamp out every ember of infection, or do we decide that some transmission is inevitable and accept future deaths and hospitalisations as the price of normality?
“New Zealand has emphatically chosen the first approach.
“After more than a year spent fighting against Covid-19, do we now need to find a way to live with it?” Reynolds ends.
Original article by Matt Reynolds, Wired, April 2, 2021.