Living with COVID-19, once restrictions are lifted - The Mercury News
Jun 14, 2021 1 min, 31 secs

“We’re going to incorporate COVID-19 into our lives, just like we’ve incorporated influenza into our lives,” said Dr.

When outbreaks occur, they’ll be limited, occurring mostly in places where vulnerable people live together, such as nursing homes, said Reingold.

But unlike early in the pandemic, there’s now a panel of tests that can quickly distinguish among the COVID virus, influenza and other respiratory pathogens.

Early on, cities struggled to stop the spread of the virus through “contact tracing” because of inadequate staff and long delays in diagnostic testing.

As the virus surged, it became too difficult to keep up with the growing number of infected people and the people who have been in contact with them.

“But with smaller outbreaks, and so many people immunized, you can throw contact tracers out there and identify people – then snuff it out pretty quickly,” said Swartzberg.

By coupling the increase in sequencing with a declining number of infections, scientists and public health officials will be able to quickly identify and pounce on mutant strains of the virus before they gain a foothold.

Natural infection in childhood may provide immunity that protects people later in life against severe disease, reported Emory’s lead investigator Jennie Lavine in the journal Science.

They know about how to handle staffing,” said Swartzberg.

“We really now have a much greater ability to throw a robust attack against this virus that we didn’t have before,” he said.

If vaccines block infection and transmission for life, the virus might become something akin to measles.

“Will they protect us for six months or six years or 60 years?” said Reingold.

Even if we eliminate transmission in California, the virus could be introduced from elsewhere.

The virus is circulating around the world,” said Dr.

“We may be behaving in very different ways,” said Reingold


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