Why Asia is better able to cope with coronavirus than Europe

Hygiene and compliance with the rules of quarantine are among the reasons the populous East Asian countries were able to quickly contain the spread of disease COVID-19. This writes Maria Prus in his blog on “Voice of America”. Hereinafter in the first person.

Почему Азии лучше удается справляться с коронавирусом, чем Европе

Photo: Shutterstock

My friend Xiao is a native of Beijing, she came to study in the US 8 years ago, speaks almost without an accent and is very Americanized. The only significant cultural difference between us I felt, when out of habit tried to say hi with a hug (as I usually do with all my friends), but she recoiled slightly. She was obviously not used to this.

I asked her how to greet friends in China. Smiling, waving their hand or send a “kiss”, but rarely shake hands and never hug and not kiss, said Xiao.

Our Colombian neighbors, Natalia and Victor came to the US a year and a half ago. They are loud, cheerful, cool, dancing reggaeton, go to his apartment in footwear and hug it out when I see friends of either sex and with boys and girls. As is common with the Italians, French and Spaniards.

The first news of the coronavirus in China, Xiao and her husband, also from Beijing, not scared. However, after the news about the possible first cases in Washington and surrounding States of Maryland and Virginia, they were one of the first of my friends, of different nationalities, who limited their social life started to work from home, stopped going to the gym, to the shops and restaurants.

Meanwhile, after the world declared a pandemic COVID-19, and US authorities urged Americans to isolation, my Colombian friends continued shopping and meet with their friends, in particular, another Colombian couple who have a 5-year-old child.

The situation with overcrowded minibuses in Kiev after closing the subway showed the Ukrainians in this resemble Colombians than the Chinese. In the same way as the Italians, the French, the Germans and the British, who, as he could, ignored the quarantine.

Timely quarantine

Even taking into account individual characteristics, ignoring the huge cultural difference between these Nations but rather civilizations impossible. The inhabitants of Eastern Asia — Chinese, Japanese and Koreans, is credited with the cleanliness and diligence, particularly in implementing the orders of the parents or the authorities.

In my opinion, in particular national features have helped East Asian countries to avoid further spread COVID-19. If you look at the total number of patients from China, of course, leads more than 80 000, but there lives 1 billion 433 million people (1 in 18 thousand population). For comparison, in the sixty millionth Italy 36 thousand cases (1 patient on 1.7 million population). It’s 10 times more!

Moreover, the outbreak in Wuhan, Hubei province, began two and a half months ago, and in Italy only a month, so you should perform the diffusion rate.

Sixty millionth Hubei province should be considered separately, because the Chinese authorities did not manage to contain the virus in Wuhan, but did not allow the same mass of contamination in the rest of the country.

You can talk about the huge opportunities offered by the Communist party of China, but South Korea and Japan have a similar trend: the rate of new infections under control. In contrast to these countries in Western Europe and the United States see the disappointing direction of the curve on the graph demonstrates the rapid increase in the number of cases of infection.

Decisive action from the government — the announcement of the quarantine, interruption of transport communications, closures, and compliance with these rules among the people has helped China, South Korea and Japan to slow the rate of infection. At the same time, Europe and the United States to a greater extent slow. Interestingly, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan — China’s neighbors and the No. 2, 3, 9 and 24 in the world of populous (in the first place — Monaco) — not even included in the top ten for the number of confirmed cases.

Asian cleanliness

Another reason may be that local long been accustomed to live in a big city, ride in crowded subway cars, so they have developed a clear hygiene rules and adhere to them.

They used that dirt and bacteria can be invisible, and if something has a clean look, it is not necessarily clean. They don’t believe in US “three-second rule”: if food is dropped on the floor or need to clean it or throw it away. Do not use other people’s stuff, don’t wear unwashed clothes, especially cosmetics or personal items. And the first thing they do when you come home, wash hands. Wear masks or stay home, if you feel the symptoms of the disease.

Of course, East Asians do not go home in street shoes, as do most Americans. And that the floor was easier to clean, they have carpets that accumulate dirt.

It is clear that the spread of the virus is affected by several other factors, in particular, the level of development of the medical system, the presence of the so-called “superastronomical” (people who are able to infect a large number of people).

However, if a pandemic of any can affect the actions of each individual — to stay home with a cough, wash hands after using the cart at the supermarket, to refuse to shake dozens of hands at the party, restraint and prudence, and determination, I think, it should learn from Asian countries. But Colombians definitely better to take dancing lessons, of course, when the quarantine will end.

Original published in the blog of Maria Prus the “Voice of America”.
ForumDaily is not responsible for the content of blogs and may not share the author’s point of view. If you want to become an author column, send your material to kolonka@forumdaily.com.

As reported ForumDaily:

  • A new virus was discovered in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019. In 2020 it covers all continents except Antarctica. On 11 March, the President of the United States Donald trump has imposed a ban on entry into the United States from the EU. The ban came into force on Friday, March 13, and will last at least 30 days. In particular, it will affect people visiting the Schengen area for the last 14 days.
  • On 13 March, the tramp of coronavirus introduced in the U.S. nationwide state of emergency.
  • March 11, the who declared the situation with coronavirus pandemic, covering more than 110 countries. With symptoms COVID-19 caused by a coronavirus, can be found here.
  • The virologist’s advice on how to protect themselves from infection — the link.
  • Using the panic in the society because of the epidemic, the scammers have come up with several schemes to get victims ‘ personal data and money. The most common ones can be found here.
  • Panicked due to emergency, Americans are buying up large quantities of toilet paper, but can’t explain why it during an outbreak.
  • Trump has signed a law granting paid leave due to the coronavirus. Who can count on paid holidays, please click here.
  • All the news about the coronavirus please refer to our special projects.

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