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Covid 19 pandemic will prolong for another 4 or 5 years says Professor Peter Piot

Koon Yew Yin 29 Jan 2021

Last night CGTN interviewed Professor Peter Piot who is Director, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK. He has spent the past 40 years tracking down and fighting viruses. He said that we are only at the start of the coronavirus pandemic although the second wave may take a different form to the first one. 

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Prof. Piot, who helped discover Ebola at age 27 and has led the fight against HIV and AIDS, contracted coronavirus earlier this year. The director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in the UK, and a special advisor on coronavirus to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen spoke to Horizon about how having Covid-19 changed his perspective on the illness, why we need a vaccine and the long-term impacts of the pandemic. 

Professor said that after chasing the viruses for 40 years, he caught the coronavirus. It took three months from the beginning of the disease to recovery, but now he is back to more or less normal. But it (my experience) showed that Covid-19 is more than either a bit of a flu or that 1% go into intensive care and die. There’s a lot in between.

But it gave him a new insight. Now he knows the virus from the inside – not just studying or fighting it. It’s a very different perspective. 

The CGTN interview was half an hour long. To cut the story short, he said to be able to stop the spread of the coronavirus all the people in the whole world must be vaccinated. The virus can easily travel from one country to another. It will take a long time to produce enough of vaccine to vaccinate all the people around the world. Moreover, during the period, the virus can mutate and make the vaccine ineffective.

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Currently, the US which has the most Covid 19 case in the world. It is useless for the US to produce enough of vaccine to vaccinate all the people in US if the all the people in the neighbouring countries are not vaccinated because the virus can easily travel from one country to another. 

The world population is 7.8 billion people. Can you imagine how long it will take to produce enough of vaccines to vaccinate 7.8 billion people?  

Although he does not have a crystal ball to tell the future, based on his long experience, he predicted that the Covid 19 pandemic will prolong for another 4 or 5 years.   

By the way, it is very important to mention that the demand for more medical gloves will continue to surge for a long time.  

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