Seniors fear your grandchildren
Should there be a coronavirus outbreak in my area, I expect to get the Covid-19 virus despite all precautions. Why? This virus is the sneakiest in history. Unlike prior viruses that announced themselves with a high fever, young people and children may be infected and transmit the virus with minor symptoms without fever or, as some scientists suspect, without any symptoms. What will be the likely source of the virus that will infect me? I have a 12-year-old daughter in school, and she has friends over a couple of days of a week. Assuming her school remains open, a child will bring the virus into my home.
My situation applies to every parent of a school child. If one wants to avoid contamination, it will be necessary to avoid not only the children but also their parents. Vulnerable grandparents will have to isolate themselves. Last week, a 90-year-old in San Francisco became infected through a younger family member.
As every parent knows, washing hands often and dutifully wearing a mask for hours is not possible for children. For kids and most adults, hand washing is a five-second splash. My child’s school has 300 students, and each bathroom has six sinks. Students do not have the time nor the facilities for washing their hands for 20 seconds, and how often should they wash?
Hand sanitizer? If a family can’t buy it because the stores are sold out, how can a school purchase a sufficient supply to last the school year? Also, no parent is going to keep her child at home for 14 days because of a sniffle or cold.
The schools in China, Italy, and elsewhere have closed their schools, which is the only way to reduce the population of stealth carriers. Should there be an outbreak in your area, like in northern Italy, seniors must avoid contact with their grandchildren and their parents too, if possible. Seniors in three-generation households in China caught the virus from the younger members and died.
During an outbreak, people with grandparents should wear masks and gloves when visiting them and should not linger. It is important to remember you may not have any symptoms but are contagious. Italy recommends that persons over 75 should stay home, which is good advice for those living alone and not with families.
Studies of the Spanish Flu pandemic have found that towns that closed schools earlier had fewer deaths. I am hoping that when (not if) the Covid-19 virus invades my town, the schools will shut down early.
The Wired article about the coronavirus and children:
Here is the article from the NY Times:
1 week ago, my local school chose to let students return from Italy directly to classes “as long as they didn’t have symptoms”
I share custody half-time with my ex, who refused to take the kids out until or unless the school actually closes.
So I asked her to keep the kids indefinitely. In reality, I figure in another week or two the school *should* close. Then 2 weeks of quarantine at their Mom’s house.
Sucks to be without my kids for a month. But I’m immunocompromised and over 50. It would suck even worse for my kids to have to worry while Dad is in the hospital, or worse
I believe the word ‘fear’ should be replaced with ‘precaution’. When I was a grade school child in the early 1970s my father went to live with his mother for at least a week, possibly longer, while my sister and I had the chicken pox. Somehow my father had escaped having the chicken pox himself. Unlike you, he was not immunocompromised. He was a small business owner (5-9 employees) though and did not feel he could afford the chance of catching the disease and not being there to run the business for any extended period.
The case death rate for those in the high risk groups of age/or and chronic health conditions should not be merely passed off as being comparable as with influenza. This is a point that I cannot seem to get across to my cousin whose elderly father is currently having cardiac problems and living in an assisted care community/facility. The normalcy bias/denial is too strong.
On children bringing home cold viruses.