Will You Feel Comfortable Going to Crowded Places Post-Easing?

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  • #1
kyphysics
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Restrictions are set to ease in the coming weeks/months in the U.S.

Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?

Will a part of your behavior forever be changed by COVID-19? i.e., always wear a mask or have one nearby, etc.?

Feel free to add any extra thoughts.
 

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  • #2
berkeman
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I probably won't do that stuff until a couple weeks after I get my vaccination. :wink:
 
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  • #3
Wrichik Basu
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Not only in the US, our Govt. too is thinking about easing restrictions and lifting the lockdown completely in some places.
Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?
There are some things that you "have" to do because there is no second option. Transport is one example. Using our car everyday is not feasible. So public transport is the only option. Going by the crowd during peak hours before the lockdown, it is questionable whether masks or hand sanitizers can at all keep us safe.
 
  • #4
Mondayman
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Not a chance. I get enough socialization with my job. People on their own are okay, but once you get them into a large crowd it's just a hot mess. You can't even count on people to throw out their garbage in public, let alone wash their hands after sneezing or using the washroom. Plus all the kids that will be around. Everybody is on their cellphone not paying attention. And the slow walkers! IQs drop fifty points when you surround yourself with more than twenty people. Crowds are awful.
 
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  • #5
kyphysics
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Not a chance. I get enough socialization with my job. People on their own are okay, but once you get them into a large crowd it's just a hot mess. You can't even count on people to throw out their garbage in public, let alone wash their hands after sneezing or using the washroom. Plus all the kids that will be around. Everybody is on their cellphone not paying attention. And the slow walkers! IQs drop fifty points when you surround yourself with more than twenty people. Crowds are awful.

This is a scary characterization.
 
  • #6
phinds
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I probably won't do that stuff until a couple weeks after I get my vaccination. :wink:
Exactly. And only if the vaccination has solid evidence of its effectiveness.
 
  • #7
nsaspook
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Just left a tribal casino that reopened near Spokane WA. Big crowds, people smoking and drinking as usual. People will revert to the old normal quickly IMO.

IMG_20200509_115635060 (1).jpg
 
  • #9
phinds
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Okay. Let's volunteer...
Actually, I'm counting on you to be one of the people who proves the effectiveness before I'm OK w/ it. :smile:
 
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  • #10
Mondayman
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This is a scary characterization.
I'm being overdramatic mostly.
 
  • #11
jack action
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Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?
Yes.
Will a part of your behavior forever be changed by COVID-19?
No.
 
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  • #12
symbolipoint
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Restrictions are set to ease in the coming weeks/months in the U.S.

Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?

Will a part of your behavior forever be changed by COVID-19? i.e., always wear a mask or have one nearby, etc.?

Feel free to add any extra thoughts.
First question : No

Second question : Yes
 
  • #13
BillTre
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Actually, I'm counting on you to be one of the people who proves the effectiveness before I'm OK w/ it. :smile:

It's called using your friends/acquaintances as a bioassay.
 
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  • #14
StatGuy2000
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I think that, given the information I've been reading about in terms of the # of new COVID-19 cases, that it might be premature for the US to ease restrictions in the coming weeks (the situation will likely be different in several months).

The key question would also be how the restrictions are to be eased. Here in Ontario, Canada, the provincial government has set out a "roadmap" outlining how specific low-risk businesses will be set to re-open, as long as social distancing practices are set, and further easing will be contingent on the number of new cases of COVID-19 (along with ramped testing and tracing), with no dates attached. I think that is wise, because any re-opening should be based on how prevalent are COVID-19 cases out there (especially for those who are asymptomatic).

If various states can demonstrate that the # of new cases are down, and can guarantee that testing and tracing will become widely and immediately available, then I think it is safe for more restrictions to be eased, and to gradually allow for more crowded places. Otherwise, I think current restrictions should be kept in force.
 
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  • #15
russ_watters
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I think that, given the information I've been reading about in terms of the # of new COVID-19 cases, that it might be premature for the US to ease restrictions in the coming weeks (the situation will likely be different in several months).
[quote from another thread]
Perhaps because I live in Canada (which, from all the information I've seen thus far, has handled the COVID-19 pandemic far more effectively than the US), my views from this differs from yours.
Canada certainly has done better than the US, but the fundamental problem is actually the same: the drop in new cases enabled by social distancing has been very slow*. That tells me that the progress that has been made - from whatever threshold - is very fragile. It means that it won't take much for the case counts to start rising again.

*Only in places where the virus started running out of people to infect has the fall-off in case count been rapid (cities like NYC). Elsewhere it has been quite sluggish. And in fact, if you eliminate NYC, the overall case count in the US is still rising.
 
  • #16
StatGuy2000
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Canada certainly has done better than the US, but the fundamental problem is actually the same: the drop in new cases enabled by social distancing has been very slow*. That tells me that the progress that has been made - from whatever threshold - is very fragile. It means that it won't take much for the case counts to start rising again.

*Only in places where the virus started running out of people to infect has the fall-off in case count been rapid (cities like NYC). Elsewhere it has been quite sluggish. And in fact, if you eliminate NYC, the overall case count in the US is still rising.

In terms of risks of case counts rising again in the future (unless strong mitigation measures continue to be taken), this is a problem not just in Canada and the US, but in the entire world, including in China (where the pandemic initially originated).

And even in the case of Canada, the re-opening of the broader society will likely be taking place in carefully planned stages to limit the very risk you are speaking of.
 
  • #17
russ_watters
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And even in the case of Canada, the re-opening of the broader society will likely be taking place in carefully planned stages to limit the very risk you are speaking of.
That's the way it is everywhere, but in my opinion the timing doesn't change the fundamental problem, it only selects the threshold. What in my view we're saying with the timing/threshold is "I'm ok with X number of new cases/deaths per day in perpetuity."

A common threshold I'm seeing (and exists in PA) is 50 new cases per 100,000 people per 2 weeks. If we achieve and then hold at that threshold for the next year, that's 1,300 cases (1.3%) and around 20 deaths per 100,000 (at 1.5%). Have we decided we're ok with that? And what if we have trouble holding the threshold? What if the only way to hold the threshold is substantial social distancing*, not far from where we're at now?

*Absent even more unpopular measures.
 
  • #18
kyphysics
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A common threshold I'm seeing (and exists in PA) is 50 new cases per 100,000 people per 2 weeks. If we achieve and then hold at that threshold for the next year, that's 1,300 cases (1.3%) and around 20 deaths per 100,000 (at 1.5%). Have we decided we're ok with that? And what if we have trouble holding the threshold? What if the only way to hold the threshold is substantial social distancing*, not far from where we're at now?

I have low IQ, but 20 deaths per 100,000 is a death rate of 1.5%?
 
  • #20
hmmm27
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Gonna wait for a vaccine... then wait for results of the vaccine... then get the vaccine... then avoid the hell out of crowds, anyways : mask (placeboic as it may be) in place when unavoidable.
 
  • #21
Astronuc
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Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?
I generally avoid crowded places. I don't care for the noise. I did the bar and concert things 17-23. These days, I'd rather be outside and away from crowds. The places were I live, if I don't use a car, I ride a bike, although I have taken trains.

I'll avoid crowded places, e.g., trains, airports to the extent possible, and if necessary, I'll wear a mask, use hand sanitizer and practice social is distancing.

The area where I am currently has started to unofficially to relax restrictions, and many do not wear masks in public or exercise care in maintaining distance, so I'm interested to see if there is an increase in new infections. There are still new positive cases, but the rate has slowed.

In the region, there was a barber/hair dresser who had been reported as serving customers during the stay-at-home period, which we are still in. Police checked the business, which appeared closed. Turns out he was working in his home in the back of the shop. Well, he has been hospitalized with COVID-19, and authorities are trying to notify customers.
 
  • #22
StatGuy2000
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Gonna wait for a vaccine... then wait for results of the vaccine... then get the vaccine... then avoid the hell out of crowds, anyways : mask (placeboic as it may be) in place when unavoidable.

Once you have received a COVID-19 vaccine (whenever that becomes available -- likely by 2021 from what I've been reading, although possibly earlier), there would not be any need to avoid crowds.
 
  • #23
StatGuy2000
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That's the way it is everywhere, but in my opinion the timing doesn't change the fundamental problem, it only selects the threshold. What in my view we're saying with the timing/threshold is "I'm ok with X number of new cases/deaths per day in perpetuity."

A common threshold I'm seeing (and exists in PA) is 50 new cases per 100,000 people per 2 weeks. If we achieve and then hold at that threshold for the next year, that's 1,300 cases (1.3%) and around 20 deaths per 100,000 (at 1.5%). Have we decided we're ok with that? And what if we have trouble holding the threshold? What if the only way to hold the threshold is substantial social distancing*, not far from where we're at now?

*Absent even more unpopular measures.

The questions I've bolded above are things that we all need to wrestle with. However, it is worth pointing out that 20 deaths per 100,000 is actually a low death rate, and not entirely out of line with other causes of death.

It's also worth pointing out that the death rate you count is based on the assumption of no new treatments being available for COVID-19. However (as I've mentioned in another thread), remdesivir (an antiviral medication developed by Gilead, originally intended to treat Ebola) has shown some evidence of being effective against COVID-19 and is set to be approved by the FDA, and is already approved for emergency use. These and other treatments being developed will change the calculation that you speak of. Not to mention availability of vaccines.
 
  • #24
aindien
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I think it is quite premature also at this time. I have never liked crowds. People in crowds irritate me. The decisions that people make in crowds are subpar. I will personally be keeping my distance for a long time.
 
  • #25
russ_watters
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The questions I've bolded above are things that we all need to wrestle with. However, it is worth pointing out that 20 deaths per 100,000 is actually a low death rate, and not entirely out of line with other causes of death.
It would be about 66,000 deaths in the US. And yes, when I was more optimistic a month ago I was thinking 60-80,000 deaths (common predictions at the time) total and a 2-month shutdown and a sharp but potentially short recession before getting back to near normal would be a "good" result. But now we're looking at 100,000 + another 66,000 (by that example calc I made) and ongoing severe mitigation efforts, sinking the economy further into a depression for the next year. The deal is getting sourer.
 
  • #26
BillTre
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Once you have received a COVID-19 vaccine (whenever that becomes available -- likely by 2021 from what I've been reading, although possibly earlier), there would not be any need to avoid crowds.
This is assuming that the vaccine you get is effective and that its effectiveness lasts reasonably long.
 
  • #27
phinds
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This is assuming that the vaccine you get is effective and that its effectiveness lasts reasonably long.
I agree. Exactly my post #6
 
  • #28
StatGuy2000
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This is assuming that the vaccine you get is effective and that its effectiveness lasts reasonably long.

Part of the clinical trial process in getting a vaccine available involves determining how effective it is (I used to work as a biostatistician for a major vaccine manufacturer, so I understand what's involved in testing for immunogenicity, and in analyzing clinical trial data to determine that, along with safety). So I'm operating under the assumption that the vaccine will be effective.

In terms of how long the effectiveness lasts -- once the populace has attained some level of immunity, any subsequent exposure will very likely be much milder (much of the severity of COVID-19 is due to the fact that we are all immunologically naive to the SARS-COV2 virus). But even so, it is likely people may need to be vaccinated again for COVID-19 in the future (similar to other vaccines like diphtheria or flu).
 
  • #29
Rive
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Curious if you'd feel comfortable going back to "life as normal" when this happens? Will you go to your local bar, a concert, a crowded restaurant (like Olive Garden), ride a bus, etc.?
Not US, but similar situation. My answer is a kind of 'no'. I never was a very social type to start with, so no rush.
I think I'll pass the right to became lab rat for testing the waters: there are enough volunteers out there.
 
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  • #30
Mary Conrads Sanburn
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:smile: I wear a mask and surgical gloves when I go into grocery stores and Cosco.:wink:

To StatGuy2000 #28:


National Institutes of Health, 9000 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, Maryland 20892

U.S. Department of Health and Human Service

[ . . . ]

Ultimately, the findings support remdesivir as the standard therapy for patients hospitalized with COVID-19 and requiring supplemental oxygen therapy, according to the authors. However, they note that the mortality rate of 7.1% at 14 days in the remdesivir arm indicates the need to evaluate antivirals with other therapeutic agents to continue to improve clinical outcomes for patients with COVID-19. On May 8, 2020, NIAID began a clinical trial (known as ACTT 2) evaluating remdesivir in combination with the anti-inflammatory drug baricitinib compared with remdesivir alone.

[ . . . ]
https://www.nih.gov/news-events/new...ws-remdesivir-covid-19-improves-time-recovery

P.S. I'm going to the Farmer's Market tomorrow and walk the dog then go golfing! :biggrin:
 
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  • #31
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No. I want a vaccine first. But I will do it because here in Aus the risk is very low.

Thanks
Bill
 
  • #32
kyphysics
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Quick question for those in the know:

Why is reusing a mask unsafe if it's been left out to dry, say, for three days. I get that a mask can be compromised if it gets wet (from our own mouth's spit and water droplets). The moisture provides "points of entry/exit" on the mask. But, if you let it dry out and you wait a few days too (in case the mask has COVID particles on it), then couldn't you in theory reuse it?

Just asking, because I have 10 or so masks left. Kind of annoying to keep buying.
 
  • #33
Mary Conrads Sanburn
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Hi kyphysics :smile:
I think personal hygiene is important. My husband thinks we both need to use masks and surgical gloves when we are out and about if there will be a crowd of people. However, we don't use a mask or gloves
when were hiking with the dog. Exercise is very important.

I have a beautiful garden and the cat and dog love playing outside with me. We don't use masks when we are at home.
https://www1.health.gov.au/internet/publications/publishing.nsf/Content/ohp-enhealth-manual-atsi-cnt-l~ohp-enhealth-manual-atsi-cnt-l-ch3~ohp-enhealth-manual-atsi-cnt-l-ch3.7
 
  • #34
Rive
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...couldn't you in theory reuse it?
Those masks are meant to cover a very sesitive area of the human body. You should think of them kind of like about underwear.
If sanitized (by any proper means, like drying them, preferably by sunshine) you can wear them longer, but ultimately: sanitization is still not washing. The dirt will accumulate.

It is difficult to advocate wearing dirty underwear, even if it is 'sanitized'. That's one typical topic of teenage comedy movies :wink:

If it is not washable then you are meant to throw them away (by the proper way recommended by the local rules) at some point.
 
  • #35
kyphysics
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Thanks for the responses. I guess I'll have to keep buying then. Are people stocked up for a month or more?

Or, are you using "washable" self-made type of masks?
 

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