Hilbert Morales | EL OBSERVADOR
Photo Credit: Unsplash

During last December 2919 a Chinese physician identified a new respiratory ailment caused by a virus which was highly virulent and infectious. Chinese government authorities required that doctor to retract his heads-up notification which had been communicated to the local medical community. The physician became ill with that very same viral infection and died.

Then a Chinese community of 11 million residents located in the city of Wuhan was quarantined to no avail because tourists from a cruise ship had contacted that same respiratory illness. That cruise liner was denied docking services at several ports until Cambodia allowed it to use its docking/harbor facilities.

Now here in our very own community, Dr. Sara Cody, M.D., the Public Health Officer of Santa Clara County, has confirmed that up to eighteen individuals who have had exposure to this virulent infectious virus have returned to the County of Santa Clara. It is my understanding that all are being quarantined at home for 14 days while monitored by the Department of Health.

Back in China, the community which first experienced this highly infectious respiratory disease, has had 1500 patients die out of the 35,000 individuals who were stricken by this COVID-19 (initially referred to as the ‘Wuhan Virus’, then ‘Coronavirus’) viral respiratory disease.

In order to avoid having an epidemic anywhere, all individuals need to do what is most effective in restricting the spread of this disease to any and all individuals with whom they have made contact.

This may be done effectively by coughing or sneezing into the crook of your arm rather than into your cupped hands quickly placed in front of your nose and mouth.

Infected hands are the most effective distributors of viral and bacterial diseases because many viruses and bacteria survive on many surfaces. When you sneeze or cough into the crook (bent elbow area) of your arm, that surface hardly ever comes into contact with others. The wearing of long-sleeved shirts or blouses (cotton surfaces are best) has a very effective absorption surface.

Try to cough or sneeze into the crook of your arm rather than the traditional coughing into your cupped hands which are then used and make contact with many other surfaces and individuals. If each afflicted individual can do that much, the spread of viral disease via coughs and sneezes will be greatly decreased.

Washing your hands before you make contact with anyone also is a very effective way to limit the spread of any respiratory disease.

Viruses are able to survive on many environmental surfaces. A virus is composed of a surface capsule made up of lipids, carbohydrates, and proteins. Their interior contents are almost entirely DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) or RNA (ribonucleic acids) which have the capacity to take over the metabolism of any cell-host infected where they multiply (replicate).

At the completion of that replication process, the host cell disintegrates resulting in the release of multiple viral progeny. The cellular debris causes a strain on the immune system which actively works to neutralize it and remove it via kidneys and liver functions. Therefore, an infected individual is advised to drink a lot of water.

The urinary elimination process is the quickest and most effective way your body’s physiology keeps itself in a healthy equilibrium state, a process which goes on all the time any metabolic process is in operation.

It is an infected individual who should wear a face mask to minimize contamination of local air space. Many healthy individuals purchase and wear facemasks to protect themselves and sustain their health status.

The maintenance of a clean air environment is better served when infected individuals wear the facemasks whose effect is to minimize the amount of infectious aerosols (put into the air space by coughing or sneezing which contaminates the environment).

It is this type of system analysis which is employed by public health science specialists to figure out what is the best thing to do.

The outcome is that infectious individuals are quarantined for 14 days while monitored by physicians and public health specialists. Therefore “it is the infected individuals who must all participate in doing what is possible (such as wearing a facemask) to minimize their infectious contributions to the air space used by others.

If this community is to be successful in the containment of COVID-19, then it is very essential that those infected individuals be the ones who actually wear facemasks which minimize infections aerosols coughed or sneezed out there. Peer pressure is effective. If you have a friend who has a cough or the flu, do encourage that individual to obtain and wear a facemask.

A FINAL REPEAT: IT IS THE INFECTED INDIVIDUAL WHO MUST OBTAIN AND WEAR A FACE MASK. It is best for non-infected individuals to not wear face masks.

I have presented this detailed analysis so that we all understand that healthy individuals do not need to use facemasks for protection and avoidance of viral infections. It is the infected individual who must be responsible for getting and using a facemask or staying in voluntary isolation which amounts to voluntarily going into seclusion and isolation.

Now remember to decontaminate yourself. Wash your hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds. Remember to use a damp wash cloth to decontaminate your cell phone (wipe it several times). Learn to not touch your face (mouth, nose, or eye areas) with your soiled hands. The eyes, nose and mouth are openings through which an infection may enter your body’s physiological systems.

These sorts of infectious routes can be stopped cold by becoming consciously aware that these are entry portals for infectious materials. Do not do anything to your eyes, nose, mouth and facial surfaces without first washing your hands.

When I was a supportive surgery staff member (155th Station Hospital, 1946-49), I learned to scrub my hand and arms from finger tips up to elbows for at least 5 minutes to ensure surgical cleanliness which enabled being an assistant whose patients healed without infections of any sort. This level of surgical cleanliness may be achieved by anyone of us.

When the majority of us routinely practice surgical cleanliness, or at least wash our hands for 20 seconds at a time, we will be able to prevent the spread of this COVID-19. Also add in the task of dust control – thoroughly removing dust in your home and work area is encouraged at least once every two weeks.

The spread of this COVID-19 can be achieved with dust free cleanliness, its practice will reduce asthma and other respiratory afflictions. Dust-free level of cleanliness is a very healthy environment to live in, but it takes effort, time, and consciousness.

When the residents of this community understand this viral infectious system, then it may be possible to effectively restrain and contain the spread of that COVID-19 strain. Now you know why when at least 65% of all of us do what is needed, then it is possible to effectively stop the spread of any and all viruses and/or microbes.