The Business Times

Coronavirus: co-existence or eradication?

Published Tue, Apr 20, 2021 · 05:50 AM

AS the Covid-19 outbreak turned into a global pandemic, a dominant opinion among experts and policy makers emerged that the coronavirus had become so well established that human society will have to adapt, coping with it as it does with yearly bouts of colds and influenza. A certain level of loss of life would have to be anticipated - and, implicitly, accepted - in return for a resumption of life as it was before for society at large. From this point of view, seeking to eradicate the disease is simply unrealistic.

With a global infection count headed towards 150 million, a death toll of over three million, huge economic costs and the pandemic far from over, that opinion should be challenged - though on the face of it, the sheer scale of the pandemic would seem to support the "eradication is not practical" point of view.

A policy of trying to live with Covid-19 in the long term looks more hazardous now than it did half a year ago.

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