In the absence of a vaccine, the vast majority of people everywhere irrespective of peaks and ebbs in daily caseloads continue to be vulnerable to covid-19. Various surveys have taken place and continue to happen as regards the covid-19. Not only can they be basic pointers to record the progress of the pandemic but also provide necessary inputs to be followed. On Thursday last, Chinese researchers found that seasonal influenza viruses could aggravate simultaneous Covid-19 infections and cause severe illness.
The researchers—virologist Ke Xu and her colleagues at Wuhan University—have found influenza A virus infections enhancing the infectivity of SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes Covid-19, in laboratory cells and increasing viral loads and lung damage in mice.
Health experts had been concerned about the possibility of simultaneous or co-infections with flu viruses and SARS-CoV-2, particularly because influenza was expected to rise during winter.
Earlier, the University of Sydney pointed out that cold and drier conditions of winter could cause a higher risk of Covid-19 infection, mainly because of the low humidity during wintertime.
In other words, infectious droplets can hang around for longer in drier air with low humidity which increases the exposure for other people.
The scientists said their findings underscored the importance of mask use and physical distancing during the coming winter months when large proportions of people across the northern hemisphere are likely to be exposed to threats from both infections.
Jammu and Kashmir covid-19 tally rises steadily and has already reached 86754—34806 in Jammu and 51948. Yes, there has been a decrease in cases compared to last month and a half but the virus is far from overcome. The numbers are far higher than one would have expected in contemporary times.
In this scenario, it is still crucial that the authorities scale up the testing and strengthen the track and trace system.
Hospitals should be prepared for Covid surge and they should increase the number of beds, ICU’s and ventilators even as the present capacity on these fronts revealed by the government looks cozy.
As has been demanded by the experts, there continues to be an urgent need to set up more Covid care centers to cope up with the possible spike in cases. The fresh findings by the researchers also make this year’s flu shot all more critical. People and administration need to be guarded against complacency.