On Monday 4th May 2020 the MCO will be gradually lifted allowing people to go to work. This is great news because we need to produce goods and services for life to continue. Malaysia responded with a Movement Control Order effective from 18 March 2020 in order to contain the spread of the Covid19 pandemic. We started to test people entering the country, contact tracing from people who were confirmed to have the disease, testing, quarantining, monitoring treatment, ICU etc. followed.
In the mean time people were basically confined indoor at home while social distancing and masks were required for those in outdoors.
Basically what our government did and what our health authorities did are highly commendable, given the unknown nature of this public “enemy” at that time.
It is basically a flu virus. But one info-graphics video showed the rate of its spread to be double of the flu, but not substantiated with evidence. But whatever it is, the most important factor is how many people fall sick from it. For example say a virus spreads 10 times faster but nobody actually falls sick from it, then we won’t be even bother about it, right? There are such viruses. So we would like to know how many people do fall sick and how many die from Covid19.
Alhamdulillah, over the last 3 months data and evidence from around the world started pouring in regarding the nature of this virus and the disease it causes, i.e. Covid19. Data show it is indeed no more lethal than the normal flu virus. In the Malaysian case the death rate due to Covid19 is 1.7%, which means 98% of those infected ultimately recover on their own, even though we do not have a known cure yet.
Data from the US and Europe (they have seasonal flu due to winter) show that the group of people normally vulnerable to flu are the same group vulnerable to Covid19, i.e. basically the elderly and those with underlying health issues. Children seem to be immune to Covid19. The US and Europe go through winter season when many of their elderly succumb to flu. Their data reveal an observation like in the diagram below:
So when they compare previous years data with this year’s data there is no significant increase in total deaths. Which means a death in Covid19 means a lesser death from flu or pneumonia. Look at the American graph below for pneumonia deaths. Since early this year the deaths have been falling like a miracle. The Italians also found the same.
Also in the US, influenza medications were found to be effective in treating Covid19. Even Mufti Menk mentioned a brother in the UK who was terribly ill and hospitalized due to Covid19, recovered as normal within 5 days after consuming habbatus sauda with honey, the prophetic medicine for flu.
Why hospitals are overwhelmed then? Because we did not follow the norm due to the novel nature of this virus and we simply followed directives from WHO. The norm is we test and diagnose only people who come to you seeking for medical treatment, i.e. having the symptoms. But in this case we started testing people who were entering the country, searched for people using contract tracing, testing all of them, and those found positive with the virus are isolated, quarantined, treated and looked after. This is what caused the hospital’s capacity threshold to be breached. To understand this better, imagine we suddenly go out there and test every citizen for flu virus, whoever having it, healthy or sick, asked to be quarantined or hospitalized. Can you imagine how much stress that can place the healthcare system? Basically, instead of the virus searching for its victims and sending them to hospital, we went searching for the virus.
Is our government’s lockdown action, i.e. the Movement Control Order justified then? The answer is a big “Yes” since that was indeed the best decision based on the information we had at that time. Firstly it was a new virus and we did not have much information about it. Secondly the pictures, videos and writings regarding the disease that were emerging from China and how authorities there handled the situation were very scary indeed and brought panic into our hearts. Accordingly, we followed strictly directives from WHO. Their pandemic models predicted millions to die from this disease worldwide, but Alhamdulillah that did not happen.
Now having the confidence that this virus is no more lethal than the normal flu virus, we should just have to go about our lives as normal. Covid19 is going to be with us but is just another flu virus. It will get pretty much the same people vulnerable for flu. These people must take care of themselves just they would for normal flu. Alhamdulillah due to our hot climate, flu is not a big killer here compared to colder countries in the northern and southern hemisphere.
This is the reason why Taiwan and Sweden beat the virus easily by simply wearing masks and practicing social distancing without imposing any lockdown. Both did not follow WHO’s directives and they did very well. In fact data shows even if they had not worn masks or practiced social distancing, life would have been just as normal. Someone, therefore, has to be made responsible for misleading the world big time. The “pandemic” has caused the death of many hundreds or thousands of people. Thousands of businesses have collapsed, and millions rendered unemployed and displaced. Governments had to fork out billions of dollars in economic stimulus packages, often with borrowed funds. We must put all these cost on their heads.
I am particularly thankful to our government authorities for correctly doing what had to be done and after realizing the true nature of the disease have decided to open the economy. This is very important and urgent in order to avert numerous socioeconomic and health problems that would otherwise ensue.
In my opinion, analyzing from various sources, this pandemic seems to be more a politically and economically motivated agenda. It’s a geopolitical game with multiple objectives, which I don’t wish to discuss here; and we are just a victims of it.
So let’s take the lockdown as Takdir from Allah that has Hikmah in it. I think many enjoyed it while many others had to endure it. However we must be wary of the new normals people are talking about following this pandemic, especially “low touch society” that includes social distancing etc. This is one of the things the “perpetrators” of this pandemic want. If this virus is a lesser creature than the normal flu virus, why must it change our way of life due to it? Our religion and society are actually high touch in nature, promoting concepts like jemaah, bersalaman, rapatkan saf, tawaf, hajj, umrah etc. that involve large gatherings. The promoted new norms are going against these. We can accept modernity, scientific advancements etc. but should never surrender our liberty and right to closeness. Wallahu A’lam Bis Sawab.
Prof. Dato Dr Ahamed Kameel Mydin Meera
3 May 2020