Bill Gates shares thoughts on how to fight coronavirus
In his blog post, GatesNotes, Gates compared the coronavirus outbreak with World War II and suggested innovation as a tool to fight the outbreak.
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has shared thoughts on his blog about how to fight the coronavirus pandemic. He also wrote about what countries should do to reopen their economies.
“During World War II, an amazing amount of innovation, including radar, reliable torpedoes, and code-breaking, helped end the war faster. This will be the same with the pandemic. I break the innovation into five categories: treatments, vaccines, testing, contact tracing, and policies for opening up. Without some advances in each of these areas, we cannot return to the business as usual or stop the virus,” he wrote in his blog.
How Gates believes innovation can help in tackling the COVID-19 outbreak:
Treatment: The public will need treatment that’s 95% effective in order for people to feel safe in public gatherings, such as football games or concerts, he said. He pointed toward the potential of using blood plasma or antibodies, antivirals and Hydroxychloroquine.
Vaccines: “Short of a miracle treatment,” the only way for people to return to some sense of normal is through a vaccine, Gates said. Vaccines would be the most obvious path back to normalcy, he stated, but they and other needed interventions will require enormous investments if they are to be developed quickly.
Testing: Gates said health workers should all have access to tests, while asymptomatic people should wait to be tested until all symptomatic people have been tested. People should also have access to taking tests at home, whether it’s a rapid result one or one that’s sent off to labs, he said.
Contact tracing: Gates said that people who have been in close contact with someone who tested positive should be prioritised for testing and self-isolate.
Opening up: He believes that most developed countries will enter the second phase of the pandemic in the next two months. Countries will have to learn from other countries that have strong testing in place on when it’s appropriate to open up, he said.