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Jun 11, 2021

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When Will The Pandemic End?

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As COVID-19 vaccinations rise, case counts, hospitalizations and deaths have fallen. So, 15 months after the pandemic started, people are beginning to ask: When will it end? Good Question.

“This is not going to have a definitive ending that we sometimes see with outbreaks,” said Jan Malcom, Minnesota’s Commissioner of Health.

“It’s a global phenomenon.”

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It was March 11, 2020, when the World Health Organization officially declared the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the WHO, the declaration is a way to characterize an outbreak, but it holds no official meaning. It will no longer be considered a pandemic when the worldwide spread stops.

When WCCO posed this Good Question to people walking Bde Maka Ska on Wednesday, the answers ranged from “no idea” to “the end of the year” to “we’re acting like it is.”

Respiratory therapist Ayantu Hassan said most people already think it’s over, but not her.

“We’re still dealing with COVID patients,” Hassan said.

University of Minnesota infectious disease expert Michael Osterholm calls pandemics worldwide epidemics – they occur not just one region, but worldwide.

“The challenge we have when declaring a pandemic over is that, in it of itself, it doesn’t really, in a sense, end,” he said, comparing it to the HIV/AIDS pandemic in the 1980s. “HIV/AIDS didn’t go away, it just became an everyday normally expected problem. At that point, it no longer held it’s pandemic status, because there wasn’t an outbreak around the world. It was what you expected.”

In the U.S., Malcolm says vaccination will be key to feeling like the pandemic isn’t ruling people’s lives. Both state and federal officials are striving for a benchmark of 70% vaccination of American adults.

When asked if reaching that 70% threshold gets the U.S. closer to the end, Malcolm responded that it’s an important milestone.

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“We want to get beyond 70%, but that’s a good amount of protection that gives the virus less place to go and less places to continue to spin off these variants that have to be the thing that we guard against,” she said.

Experts say variants are an important component of how and when this pandemic will end, given the global reach of the virus and far lower vaccination rates in many countries outside the United States.

“We’re seeing new strains of the virus which can reduce the protection of the vaccines,” says Osterholm. “As long as transmission continues around the world, we will be at risk of these variants, or these mutated viruses, so our status today may not be the same status we have tomorrow.”

Malcolm says there are some specific metrics that help state officials determine “caution” levels of virus spread and transmission. Those metrics include the percentage of tests coming back positive, cases per 100,000 people and hospitalizations per 100,000 people. The state of Minnesota just recently fell below caution levels for each of these metrics.

“We do really want to see these measures stay stable for a few weeks before we really feel it’s going to stay at that level,” says Malcolm.

Though it’s up to the WHO to officially declare an end to a pandemic, people across the world have different definitions of what “over” means.

One Minneapolis resident asked, “Is it ending here in the states – to where life gets back to normal? Is it ending worldwide where travel gets back to normal. Is it all countries? And, then it is going to end for good or is it going to come back?”

She added, “I think everyone will get to their own individual endpoint at their own individual timeline.”

Malcolm says an important point to remember is that experts believe the virus won’t ever go away. She says it’s likely that cases will once again rise this fall in the U.S., but many Americans now have been vaccinated and medical professionals have better treatments for COVID.

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“We would consider it to be in a different state – not an epidemic, but endemic,” she says. “Something that’s always there and needs to continue to be managed.”

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Meet the scientist Mars Rover who will be the priest

To this day, there is a 68-year-old Episcopal pastor who leads the congregation in St. Episcopal Church. Albana in Glen Bernie, Maryland.

It has long been found that science and humanities, without mentioning science and religion, are mutually incomprehensible areas that approach completely different issues. This idea has been distorted in recent years as educators have led to an intermediate approach.

Graduate as a geographer, in other fields, Conrad’s views differ.

“There is no conflict between science and religion,” he said. “They both explore the wonder of the world and our place in it.”

Rocks and people

Crossing the boundaries of order is not easy, and not just for pioneers who have to overcome institutional opposition.

John Maida, a former professor, graphic designer and computer worker at the MIT Media Lab, says, “The education system forces students to be scientists or humanists. He does not recognize that the same spirit and some similar techniques come under art and science. ”He once told me

“Our goal is to create people who are disciplined about the issue from the Renaissance, Da Vinci who can do everything he is interested in.”

“I read everything,” Conrad said. A brief look at his credentials reveals what Da Vinci Maida was talking about.

He holds all degrees from George Washington University in the US capital. He started as a musician, who also smoked geography. He completed several science courses in the first year and a half He later earned a master’s degree in music and later a bachelor’s degree in music in 1974 – She considered a career as an opera singer – in 1987. He returned to science in 1998 to complete his doctorate in geography.

Understanding this “terminal” phase is interesting for how life develops without people living like deep heat holes in the ocean floor. Thanks to the right places, the right moment, he says, he was given the opportunity to meet James Cameron, the famous director who built the submarine research ship with proceeds from films like “Titanic”. Thanks to the deep-sea images Cameron shot for the 3D Imax film, the images he later used in the science fiction feature of “Avatar” show hot vents that a researcher had never seen before. Details.

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One year after graduating with a doctorate, NASA – Curiosity is looking for scientists working on the geography of the vehicle – hired him – Contractor at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory run by the California Institute of Technology.

“We’re trying to understand if the process of growth and prosperity of life on Earth ever happened on Mars. If it did, we would like to know if life has appeared – if not? Why not?” He recently told his alumni magazine interviewer. This is a question that is being answered seriously today as it was done when it was first recruited in 1999.

The first experiments to help with the design were not selected – as he points out, there is a tough but collective rivalry between NASA researchers over the very small craft of getting their equipment. Still, she insisted. Conrad was transferred from his role in the JBL in 2010 to become a full-time researcher NASA’s Goddard Space Center Since 2017 in the Green Belt of Maryland. Served as Vice President for Model Analysis of Mars Curiosity Rover Bear And other projects, which will be resolved later when the issues are tuned. Return to Spirit – and Return to Mars

It wasn’t until later In his life Conrad returned to religious studies. After experiencing a revelation on windy days on a business trip to Antarctica, he rejoined the Episcopal Church in his youth and later attended the Episcopal School of the Cambridge in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Like a school member at Union Theological Seminary in New York, he completed his master’s degree in divinity in 2017. Soon, he commanded his Maryland congregation.

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NASA at the same time selected to be included in one of its experiments when the Mars diligence rover increased heat in the mission. This is a set of tools called Sherlock (scanning the living environment with luminescence for Raman and organics and chemicals), which is “not mature enough to find space for previous trips,” he said.

Its mission is to search for microbial life using instruments that include vibration spectrometers that can detect minerals and organic molecules found on the surface of Mars – such as hydrogen and carbon, which are the basic building blocks of life on Earth. This includes two high resolution cameras.

“The whole team mix includes a great number of individuals, and I am the only person on this team,” he said.

However, the search for life on Mars is no longer a high priority for him.

“I want to make that clear,” Conrad said. “My first job and my first responsibility now is to be a pastor in a church. What you see on Sunday is part of it. I have responsibilities for my church and their needs, and ultimately for the people.” Come first. People are more gentle than rocks. “

Nevertheless, he spends a lot of time in his part-time role today. In some cases, Mars has been working from his home office since the Covid 19 epidemic. The schedule is tough and two tasks should definitely stop It can be a little tiring.

Tired or not, she wants to work as a priest and give some lessons. Most importantly, Conrad insisted, the purity of everything.

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“Understanding that this is one of the tools people need to live a good life, to live in a community, to behave well. I think my second lesson is to go slow, to live a quieter and more caring life. It is the virtue of living.”

Epidemic, he says, has created the perfect opportunity to think about it and deepen its work with these lessons.

Forward to the stars If Conrad has any regrets, he focuses on his early life – when. John Glenn’s Mercury Craft reached heaven in 1962, She was 9 years old and wanted to be an astronaut above all else. This path was denied to women for decades and they had to work on a characteristic path filled with the diversity that followed. Despite the respect and intellectual zeal, it kept him on the ground.

His research has expanded to include an administrative role in his scientific work: The question of whether life can exist on other planets is, “If God could create life here, could God create it – could God create it – in another place? In answer to this question, Conrad said, “Of course.”

Life will probably be smooth and simple, but not the ET of our imagination. But it will be life, and it is this effort that keeps Conrad inspired and constantly engaged.

But will it ever enter space? Do not write.

Gregory Magnum From his home in Arizona, he writes about books, science, fir, geography and many other subjects.

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