April 17th, 2021

We need to take action to halt COVID-19


By Letter to the Editor on April 8, 2021.

Editor: The younger generation are front- line workers (hospital,schools, stores, grocery stores, baristas, first responders …) The younger generation often has to live in group settings to survive financially.
There is no paid sick leave for many in the younger generation to survive getting sick. Furthermore, our vaccination rate cannot keep up with the infection rate of B.1.1.7. We need to slow down the spread as we continue vaccination to harden the population to the new variants.
Some facts about B.1.1.7 Covid-19 Variant
– B.1.1.7 is more transmissible: 43% to 90% more transmissible than Covid Classic (original strain). Reproduction number for B.1.1.7 is ~1.4 compared to 0.9 for Covid Classic.
– B.1.1.7 is more deadly: infection was associated with 55 percent greater mortality compared to Covid Classic.
– B.1.1.7. spreads more easily in schools: with B.1.1.7, schools are pandemic accelerators and transmission sites. This is shown by research in United Kingdom, Denmark, Portugal, Austria.
– B.1.1.7 will cause a third wave: without stringent measures, including lockdowns, circuit breakers, limited closure of schools and a greatly accelerated vaccine roll-out, COVID-19 hospitalisations and deaths will increase.
The third wave in Alberta is not one generation’s fault – it is all our responsibilities including our elected officials.
More people are going to die. More people are going to suffer long COVID.
More people are going to suffer mental illness, depression, economic hardship, and social isolation for longer if we don’t act now with decisive action as being asked by our medical community.
We need a circuit breaker to help vaccination catch up with B.1.1.7 transmission in Alberta.
Epidemiologist Rawat Deonandan, on the CBC Front Burner states: “We have gotten used to mass suffering. We have gotten used to overcrowded hospitals. And we have the sense the end is near, that our only way out is vaccination. That is not true – we have other tools that allow us to have a more pleasurable exit. And I don’t think [we have] the stomach for the capital investments (to help others) or the stomach for lengthy lockdowns. Having said that, I think the inevitable circuit break lock down are coming.”
Let’s take the action we need to protect each other now. Let’s not wait for the peak of the wave.
References:
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/frontburner/the-final-showdown-how-to-fight-the-3rd-wave-1.5972117
https://directorsblog.nih.gov/2021/03/30/infections-with-u-k-variant-b-1-1-7-have-greater-risk-of-mortality/
https://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2021/03/03/science.abg3055
https://www.publichealthontario.ca/-/media/documents/ncov/research/2021/01/research-transmission-sars-cov-2-england-epi-genetic-data.pdf?la=en
https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/948584
Trevor Potter
Lethbridge

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gs172

Of course we need better vaccination rates, but this comes off as another “me first” letter. It’s not just the younger people who don’t have sick leave. As a 50+ year old male I’m concerned what would happen if i contracted covid, but I’m willing to wait my turn. I practice social distancing, mask wearing, washing hands… And then this last week when we have 2 spreader events at house parties I just shake my head. The segments of our population that ask to be vaccinated first seems to be growing by the day. First line workers, teachers, doctors, nurses, support staff and many other groups are voicing their need to be vaccinated first and people in my demographic seem to be left behind. Like I said I’m willing to wait but “everyone” needs to be responsible for their decisions.

buckwheat

Agree, seems everyone getting a government pay check wants to be first in line. Correct about me too. What about me, I am a taxpayer and demand to be first. Not really, will wait my turn. Speaking of events, Three sixtyish persons having a drink fest in a local establishment last week, none from the same family, having a great old time, invited another couple over, non family members, to join the table party. NO masks, no social distancing, none were family members. Knowing them all, thought they would have known better than that. However, they will be the ones screaming me first. We were 35 feet away on the other side of the room. Masked up and headed out. You can call Kenney and his government out all you want but the real putzes are this ilk.

DougCameron

I agree that our UCP government has handled this pandemic extremely badly but it is up to the people to act like decent human beings and care for each other. I give a little bit of leeway to the younger ones as having lived through (just barely) my youth, I realize that when we are young our brains are not fully developed yet. We are huge on emotions but rather low on common sense. Now, those over 30, while maybe 40 now, have no excuse.

biff

how is it we just had a massive spreader of the brazilian variant, from an arriving international traveler?! it is sick! bad enough the feds never shut int’l travel from the get-go: how else was corona virus getting here except from abroad? but a year later, still the same old…people bringing the virus and its mutants to us all from abroad. if it is not criminal, it sure is utterly foolish.



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