Epilogue to COVID-19
The U.S. and all the other countries of the world lost the cherished and innocent beliefs of individuality, separateness, and independence.
There was no security from a devastating infectious pathogen, quickly crossing permeable national boundaries. The self-conceived bubble of safety and autonomy had burst into the reality of living in a global interconnected population. The impact of one individual potentially effects the health and wellbeing of all on the planet.
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First, news reports from China alarmed the world of a life-threatening, novel virus rapidly spreading and challenging to contain. Now know as COVID-19. Quickly moving between human hosts, from the local origins, the infectious and contagious virus became a catastrophic global pandemic.
There are many potential contributors.
Epidemic or pandemic vulnerabilities increase dramatically with such factors as climate change, economic disparities, income inequality, and racial disparity.
The disproportionated casualties of disease, epidemics, and pandemics are often the disadvantaged and underserved populations, living in unhealthy settings, squalor with inadequate nutrition, poverty, overcrowding, and excessive pollution exposure. Places when there has been climate catastrophe as hurricanes, flooding, fires, and war population displacements, become high-risk situations.
Adverse individual and group behaviors can generate conditions favorable for a global pandemics.
Any or all the elements extending from the adverse individual or group behaviors to external conditions as the unfavorable living condition or environmental catastrophe can influence the evolution of a pandemic and a public health crisis. If there is a prevalence of favorable circumstances for contagion and spread, a novel infectious agent as COVID-19 can quickly transform into a global pandemic.
As disaster and tragic events eventually pass and heal with time, as does the pain of loss and grieving, recovery and rebuilding ultimately occur.
Then gradually, with time, compliancy again develops. There is a return to living back in a bubble of felt separateness and independence - a repetitious cycle fed by ignorance and self-interest. Indifference to the prevailing circumstances of the time, adversely affecting others, can again prevail.
The remedy is the need for constant reminders always to pay attention to the larger world outside ourselves. All must remember the dire consequence of not supporting and caring for the environment in which we live and others outside of our self-interest spheres. Staying awake to the reality and truth of our existence and interdependence will remind us of the need for cooperation, acceptance, and co-existence.
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Ron Parks MD
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**The above is for informational and educational purposes only, not as medical or mental health advice. It is the reader’s responsibility to direct personal medical or mental health questions to their primary care provider and specialty physicians. The information and statements contained in this material are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or to replace the recommendations or advice given to you by your primary or direct care providers.
Your reliance on any information provided by Dr. Parks is solely at your discretion. You are advised not to disregard medical advice from your primary or direct care providers, or delay seeking medical advice or treatment because of information contained in this article. Management of severe mental or physical health problems should remain under the care and guidance of your primary care physicians, specialist, or psychiatrists.
Lead-in photo for the article: ©mexitographer/123rf.com - from sadness to promise and belonging