Hey folks, I wanted to update you on what we know about the Coronavirus outbreak, mostly because I hope everyone will relax. My housemate went to Costco in Northern California this week, and people were using their arms to sweep drugs and canned goods into shopping carts as if they’re preparing for an apocalypse. While this panic will make lots of people wealthy (Costco is happy, I’m sure), it will also ramp up your nervous system and paradoxically make you more susceptible to the virus. It’s one thing to be prepared. It’s another to be irrationally hysterical.
We have been through novel virus outbreaks before, and the reality is that they usually do their thing and then peter out fairly quickly, making their way into the world of viruses we might contract every cold and flu season. But they are rarely, if ever apocalyptic. We’ve made it through H1N1, SARS, MERS, Ebola, and we’ll make it through this.
The Status Of Viral Spread
As of today, 94,000 cases of Covid-19 have been reported in 82 countries and territories. (You can track the virus here.) The greatest number of cases confirmed have arisen from Central China, South Korea, Italy, and Iran. Approximately 3200 people have died, but the good news is that more than 51,000 have contracted the virus and recovered.
In the United States, we have 130 known cases across 13 states. Nine people have died—all in Washington state and eight from the same county. Five of the deaths have been tied to Life Care Center, a long-term nursing home in a Seattle suburb where people tend to have underlying health issues.
We are likely to start seeing a lot more confirmed cases because the CDC finally is distributing more test kits. This week, many people have sought out medical care because they had symptoms consistent with Covid-19—but could have just as easily had the flu. Because there were not enough tests, some of those cases may have gone undiagnosed and could have been causing the spread of the virus. Many doctors were telling patients to just self-quarantine.
The CDC says that public health labs across the country using CDC test kits were expected to test up to 75,000 people by the end of this week. Still, other commercial labs are now prepared to test as well, which means that nearly 1 million people are expected to be tested through commercial labs that were approved for testing by the US Food and Drug Administration over the weekend. Until now, CDC criteria for testing were strict, but new CDC criteria calls for “Americans (to) be tested (for coronavirus), no restrictions, subject to doctors’ orders.” In other words, if you think you might have it, call your doctor.
Mortality Rate & Infectivity
The World Health Organization has calculated the death rate as 3.4%, but this is mostly based on cases from Wuhan and doesn’t include milder cases that may not have been reported yet, which might skew the data. According to the New York Times, “The death rate could turn out to be below 1 percent, according to an editorial published by Dr. Anthony S. Fauci and Dr. H. Clifford Lane, of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and Dr. Robert R. Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
By comparison, the seasonal flu this year seems to have a less than 1% mortality rate. The good news is that while the death rate of COVID-19 appears to be higher than the flu, the WHO reports that it’s less infection than the flu, making it harder to catch.
So . . . take precautions to avoid viral spread.
- Wash your hands.
- Eat well.
- Take a good immune-boosting mushroom formula to bolster your immune system. (Mason’s Mushrooms Immune & Gut Tonic is the one I’m taking.)
- Get enough sleep.
- Meditate and ground yourself into the solid foundation of Mother Earth and whatever spiritual ground you resonate with.
- Do whatever you must to restore your nervous system to relaxation response, where your immune system can function optimally to fight off viruses and get you well in case you get sick.
And if you’re still scared, try this IFS practice.
If you feel fear, anxiety, panic, or somatic sensations you associate with those emotions, see if you can comfort that scared part as if it’s a little child. Close your eyes and give that little one hugs, support, nurture, and maybe a cup of tea. Inform this little child of the rational reasons why panic is not necessary right now. But then remember that little children are often not rational, they’re emotional. So let this little one be emotional if he or she feels that way. Use whatever emotion arises as a trailhead to get more insight into why this part panics when there’s no rational reason to panic. While panic is not rational, the emotion is real and deserves your attention and care. If you follow it, you’re likely to find a part that was hurt a long time ago that’s doing everything it can to be in control and to get loved. Maybe that little part had to grip at control strategies because it wasn’t safe to be out of control. Maybe it learned to gather information or gather supplies or gather strategies to be in charge, to fend off uncertainty. Let it know you get that, and it made sense then. But now you’re a grown-up, and you’ll take care of this little one and do your best to keep it safe. Tell it you understand how scary it is to feel out of control when things are unstable and uncertain. Tell it you’re here for it. Love this part. Hold it. Let it know you’re a grown-up, and you’ll do your best to keep it safe. Rock it like a child and ask what it needs from you. Promise to come back tomorrow and check up on it if you’re willing. Notice if your nervous system feels calmer.
I’ll update you again soon. If you’re not on the update list, you can register here.
Wishing you optimal health,
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