Bleats

If You Follow This Rule, We Could Have COVID-19 Under Control In Australia Weeks

It's honestly not that difficult.

With all of Scott Morrison’s rambling press conferences about what’s being done to contain the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic that’s hitting Australia, it feels like there’s a lot of mixed messaging on what the government is doing to get this disease under control.

But according to data from a complex model on how coronavirus COVID-19 spreads that’s been developed by researchers in Australia, the key to bringing the disease under control surprisingly lies in our hands.

Speaking of being in coronavirus self-isolation, the GOAT team talk about how to make the most of your quarantine on ‘It’s Been A Big Day For…’ below:

According to ABC News, researchers at the University Of Sydney have built a very complex simulation of the Australian population and then added the coronavirus COVID-19 to it to see how it spreads.

After testing various scenarios, the researchers arrived at a surprising conclusion: Bringing coronavirus COVID-19 under control in Australia – or to “flatten the curve” as some would say – could be accomplished over the course of several weeks (around 13) if at least eight out of 10 people just stay at home and follow all the responsible social distancing rules.

Hell, if we can get that number up to nine out of 10 people, the model suggests that we’ll almost get rid of the disease entirely out of the country. Interestingly, the model found that closing schools didn’t have a major impact on the number of people infected but it certainly doesn’t hurt.

However, this fight to “flatten the curve” will be all for naught if the number of Australians in self-isolation slips as little as seven out of 10 people. In other words, we have more power in this fight against the coronavirus than initially thought and it requires us to be responsible over the next few months.

However, it seems like a lot of Australians are either not too clear on how to properly adhere to social distancing rules, are doing it incorrectly, or are just being arseholes to the rest of the population so here’s just a refresher on what you need to do to minimise the risk of spreading coronavirus COVID-19 around:

  • Stay at home unless absolutely necessary, like shopping or work
  • Don’t hold any social gatherings and only very small get togethers are advised
  • Keep at least 1.5 metres apart from other people

Now keep in mind that this model isn’t definitive and makes a number of big assumptions, such as assuming infected individuals taking physical and social distancing seriously and all confirmed coronavirus COVID-19 cases in Australia were isolated since the start of the outbreak.

At most, the model is a good look into what we can do to help beat this coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. At the very least, this model is a strong argument for why people need to practice responsible social distancing as much as possible in order to minimise the risk of the disease spreading.

So in short, just stay at home for a few weeks in order to “flatten the curve,” and Australia will be able to contain the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and bring it under our control hopefully long enough for a vaccine to be developed.

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

A Positive Update On The Coronavirus Vaccine We Could All Use Right Now

Silver linings.

With the world currently in lockdown due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and patiently awaiting for a vaccine to drop so that normal life can resume, we could all do with some positive news.

Luckily for those going stir-crazy and are in desperate need of a pick-me-up, researchers working on the coronavirus COVID-19 vaccine have got an update that’ll give us some hope that we could all use right now.

Since we’re all under coronavirus lockdown, the GOAT team talk about ways to keep yourself creatively engaged on ‘It’s Been A Big Day For…’ below:

According to The Washington Post, researchers have found that the coronavirus COVID-19 isn’t mutating significantly as it moves its way across the globe, which is surprising given the number of people it’s infected so far.

Since the disease broke out in late 2019, researchers discovered that the coronavirus looks basically the same everywhere it has spread, with only four to 10 genetic differences between the original strain that originated in Wuhan and the strains wrecking havoc in the U.S. at the moment, which is very little, and there’s no evidence suggesting that one strain is deadlier than another.

This incredibly low mutation rate bodes very for that coronavirus COVID-19 vaccine we’re hoping for as it means we’ll likely only need a single vaccine rather than a new one annually like the flu vaccine.

Here’s why this is such good news. Viruses mutate over time as they spread and these changes forces scientists to continually come up with new vaccines to fight them. It’s why we need a flu shot every year.

But coronavirus COVID-19 is barely changing at all even as it makes its way through the human population, meaning that scientists will only have to make a single vaccine and it’ll be a long-lasting one. Just one jab in the arm and you’re set, hopefully.

That all being said, we still need to be cautious. As great as this news is for the development of the coronavirus COVID-19 vaccine, it is still at least 18 months or so away depending on the amount of resources being allocated to its research.

There’s also the possibility that coronavirus COVID-19 could mutate the longer it is around, with virologist Benjamin Neuman of Texas A&M University at Texarkana saying that we “might have some diversity” if the disease is “still around in a year,” so staying vigilant in containing the spread of the disease through self-isolating, lockdowns, and social distancing is important.

But let’s not dwell on the negative possibilities here and instead focus on the positives. Researchers are doing all they can to fight the coronavirus COVID-19, the disease isn’t mutating, and this means there are some good signs for that vaccine the world is patiently waiting for.

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

We Did The Grim Maths On How Much Rice You Need To Survive A Year Of The Apocalypse

No one needs to hoard this much rice.

It’s been weeks since people went bonkers over the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and started hoarding up all the toilet paper, hand sanitiser, rice and pasta they can get their hands on. It’s all ridiculous quite frankly. We simply don’t need to hoard anything, let alone a supermarket’s worth of rice. This in turn made me wonder just how much rice does one would need to survive a year of the coronavirus pandemic or just any apocalypse, so I decided to apply some Grim Maths to it.

Speaking of coronavirus self-isolation, the GOAT team talk about creative quarantine on ‘It’s Been A Big Day For…’ below:

First lets stick with using long grain white rice only as that stuff is more likely to be sold in bulk, cheaper, and is relatively easier to get your hands on. Well, pre-coronavirus hoarding frenzy anyway.

Now as much as people love rice, you simply can’t sustain solely off it since it doesn’t contain a bunch of important vitamins, minerals and proteins you need for a healthy diet. Using the average daily intake of 2,000 calories for an adult, let’s have rice make up 1,500 of those calories based on the assumption that most hoarders will be mainly eating all the rice they’ve stored up in preparation for the coronavirus pandemic/zombie apocalypse.

Since the amount of calories per gram of rice ranges between 1 to 1.5 depending on the source, let’s just average it out and say there’s 1.3 calories per gram of white rice. At 1,500 calories of rice a day, that works out to be 1,154 grams, meaning you’ll need to eat nearly 1.2 kgs of rice a day.

Over the course of a year, that means you’ll need at least 422 kgs of rice in your pantry. That’s a LOT of rice.

Gonna need more rice.

And then there’s the cost of all that rice you’re hoarding. Rice costs anywhere between 15 cents to $1 per 100 grams depending on the brand. For simplicity’s sake, let’s just take the average price of rice to be the middle of those two values, which gives is about 60 cents (rounded up) per 100 grams of rice. At 422 kgs of rice a year, you’re going to need to set aside $2,532 for your coronavirus/apocalypse rice fund.

You might think “that’s not that bad” and “it’ll be worth it,” but keep in mind that eating 1,500 calories a day in rice is just unrealistic as not only will you need other foods to maintain a healthy and balanced diet, but you’re going to get sick of rice very quickly and regret the 400kg or so of rice you’ve bought.

Is this math about how much rice a person may need for a year of the coronavirus/apocalypse/whatever accurate? Definitely not as people’s daily intake and nutrition needs vary, the differing price and nutrition values for the various rice types available, and the amount of water and electricity/gas needed to cook all this rice not being factored into the calculations.

So what is the point of this? Call it my way of working through some frustration over all the unnecessary hoarding that’s happening while attempting to show how hoarders are overreacting. Yes the coronavirus pandemic is a scary thing, but there’s just no reason to hoard anything.

Hoarders are preventing people (like the elderly and disabled) who actually need food and supplies from receiving any due to their own selfishness. You’re not stocking up a bunker, you’re simply staying at home for longer periods than usual.

Here’s hoping all this coronavirus panic buying stops soon as it’s not helping anyone, especially those sensible people who simply want a small 1 kg bag of rice that’ll last them for a few days.

Always be in the loop with our snackable podcast breaking the biggest story of the day. Subscribe to It’s Been A Big Day For… on your favourite podcast app.

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