The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has impact the globe, with the countries surrounding the Baltic Sea sadly no exception. Here is some greater insight into which countries have been affected and how their respective Baltic governments are planning to deal with the fallout of the outbreak.
How Many Cases Confirmed
So far, it seems that the majority of cases confirmed in the Baltic countries are mainly confined to Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania. The latest total of infections currently stands at 753 for the Baltic States, with one person in Lithuania already dying as a result of the coronavirus.
Although the confirmed cases only number under 800 people which is relatively low in comparison to the rest of the world, the actual figure could be much higher. It is hard to confirm an accurate amount of people infected with the virus due to the scarcity of testing kits, but the real figure is estimated to be closer to 3,000 for Lithuania, 7,000 for Latvia and 4,000 for Estonia.
As coronavirus can take two weeks before a patient starts showing symptoms, the Baltic States, along with the rest of the world, has been asked to practise self-isolation, social distancing and to stay indoors as often as possible in order to stop the disease spreading and to give medical staff the chance to catch up on existing cases before supplies run out completely.
Strategies to Curb the Outbreak
The Baltic State countries are playing their role in attempting to curb the spread of the outbreak. Those who display any symptoms of the virus are asked to stay home in self-isolation for at least a two week period. In Latvia, the government has promised increased wages for all front line medical staff in order to cope with the added work load brought on by the sudden outbreak of Covid-19 and have also pledged funds to help pioneer a new mechanical lung ventilation machine in order to help the country’s hospitals cope with the sudden surge in the need for patients using ventilators as the coronavirus primarily attacks the lungs.
Although the Baltic States are suffering with a dearth of protective medical equipment, a plane drop of essential supplies is due to be sent out to those countries most in need over the coming weeks. There has been criticism of some Baltic States for not testing people fast enough, especially in Lithuania, and for allowing Baltic cruises to continue at the start of the pandemic, although all of these have now been halted for the time being.
Some scientists claim that the spread of the coronavirus could have been predicted earlier with many stating that computers pre-warned bodies such as the World Health Organisation that the initial outbreak of the virus in the Chinese city of Wuhan would lead to a worldwide pandemic crisis. This is because the computer algorithm as part of BlueDot was able to collate airline traffic data along with foreign news reporting of the disease to predict how fast it would spread. For now, it seems like only time will tell as to what the conclusion of coronavirus will be.