What is the ‘ Flattening the Curve ‘ and how it works in the Corona Pandemic ?

It basically means same number of infections. But it happens long period of time.

  • Epidemiological units made this Curve.
  • It gives an idea about how a number of infections rise within time.
  • Flattening the curve reduce the burden to health sector.
  • It worked in Spanish Flu at 1918.

” Flattening the Curve “ you may be hearing these words now a days. 

What is the Curve ?

Epidemiological units in the world identified there are two curves in a Pandemic. 

First curve has quick peak. And reduce it with less period of time.
The second curve has low peak. Actually it has flatten peak. But infection last longer period of time.

Flattening the curve - epidemiology
Epidemiological Curve

Why flattening the curve is important ?

The curve with high peak indicates there is huge number of patients in short period of time. It will be a more burden to health sector. The number of health facilities are utilized within period is huge. But the second curve indicate less number of patients in a period of time. Although number of patients are same at the end. But this gives less burden to health sector.  

Why we need to consider about the curve ?

Because the numbers are not going well. The number of infected people doubled within less than month. There 75,000 patients on February 15 and it rises more than 153,000 on March 15. That sacred the experts. You can identify this same pattern in Italy. The number of patients from Italy rises 10,000 to 20,000 within four days. So that means Italy is going on high peak curve. That’s why Italy has faced such a problem when managing the Pandemic. It’s hard to control.

How we flatten the curve ?

The sad truth is currently there is no vaccine or definite cure for COVID19.  So CDC ( Center of Disease Control ) recommends public has the main responsibility. Proper hand hygiene, maintain adequate social distance or social isolation are important. 

COVID19 outbreak
COVID19 outbreak

History says it works 

Yes. The best example is Spanish flu on 1918. It did a serious harm to world. We can see the effectiveness when consider how two US cities Philadelphia and St.Louis reacted to this.

In Philadelphia, city officials didn’t follow the advises. Within 48 to 72 hours thousands of people started to die around the Philadelphia, ultimately 16,000 deaths recorded within six months.

But in St, Louis city officials follow the advices. They did social isolation, closed the public schools. So there was only 2,000 patients recorded from St  Louis.

The conclusion

we all have a responsibility to reduce the spread of the disease. Help the health sector, maintain good hygiene and social isolation.

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Sapumal Edirisinghe
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