• Eden Geddes

The Pandemic in Other Countries

The pandemic has affected all the countries of the world differently. There were also many different factors that contributed to how each country was impacted, including factors such as supplies, population size, and the decisions made by their governments. Countries like New Zealand have been praised for having one of the fastest responses to COVID-19, to the point where they were able to officially declare themselves COVID-19 free. New Zealand also only had a total of 25 COVID-19-related deaths with their population of five million. It has been reported that they started with a border closure and a strict lockdown beginning in early March to combat the virus. They successfully went 102 days with no community spread, however they went through a second wave in August. Following that period up with a second strict lockdown, they have now officially declared themselves free from the virus and everything has reopened.

Alternatively, Mexico is reported to be one of the countries that has been the most affected by COVID-19. Their rising levels of cases and deaths have only been amplified by their leadership having trouble figuring out what to do. After the World Health Organization declared Latin America to be the new epicenter of the virus, it also came out that Mexico largely underestimated and underreported the number of cases of the Coronavirus they have had. Currently, they report having 299,759 cases and 35,006 deaths. They have also said they believe there are more cases and deaths that have just not been recorded. Their method for recording cases has also been ridiculed by other countries because instead of implementing massive testing systems, they chose to go with a surveillance system which did not give them confirmed cases. Also, instead of closing down like other countries when the virus first reached Mexico, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador held massive gatherings as part of a presidential tour. He halted them for a few months, only to start them back up in June in an act of trying to reopen Mexico’s economy. Millions of Mexicans and health care workers have spoken up about their unhappiness with the president’s response to COVID-19, and have tried their best to work together to fight it off.

Australia has had a similar response to New Zealand for fighting off COVID-19 in their country, with 28,072 cases and 908 deaths reported. They rolled out a strict lockdown early on to try and combat the virus. They have reported that their aim is to have the COVID-19 vaccine be free to the public and easily accessible. Their government is currently distributing a $17.6 billion economic support package to their citizens to help encourage investments and keep people in their jobs despite the lockdown. Their government is also reported to be securing early access to the vaccine, once it has proven to be safe through trials. They also have public accessible sources on what their citizens can do to help fight the virus and keep themselves safe.

England has been reporting that their large-scale testing operations have proven to be successful in identifying the virus correctly across the country. Their testing is prioritized by risk, starting with those in the community who are experiencing the symptoms of cough, fever, or anosmia (the loss of smell). However, exceptions are made for care-home staff and retesting those that were positive in the past but are currently asymptomatic. They have now proposed to use regular mass testing that is less sensitive than the usual swab test being used. Citizens have vocalized their issue with this and the false-negatives that come with it though. However, there have also been reports that a new strain of COVID-19 has been found in England. They currently do not see an end in sight with even more regions of England moving into the tier-three category.

COVID-19 has been handled differently across the world, and there has not been one response that has fully proven to be the most successful. There are faults in every proposed action by the countries listed above. Even in the countries with less and deaths, there was still a secondary outbreak that was proven to have been unavoidable. Unfortunately, there is no set way to proceed when it comes to handling this, as there are too many varying factors in each individual country. The one response that has proven to be the most effective is a full and strict lockdown that lasts several months.

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