The world has spent the better part of a year attempting to gain control of the COVID-19 virus. At the same time, China has managed to get things under control, New Zealand has been remarkably free of the coronavirus, and Australia dropped below 100 new cases per day since September 2020.
Taiwan is another success story. After an initial spike in early March 2020, the country hasn’t had ten new cases reported on a single day.
On the other end of the spectrum, the United States reported over 142,000 cases on November 11, 2020.
What lessons could the U.S. learn to help the world contain COVID-19?
New Zealand Went Over 100 Days Without a Local Transmission
Although New Zealand is a small island country with several rural areas, it is the home of about five million people. In August 2020, the country had about 25 active COVID-19 cases after going an entire month without having any.
What changes did New Zealand make to stop the spread of the new coronavirus?
1. The government enacted a pandemic plan.
New Zealand initiated their influenza pandemic plan in February before COVID-19 started spreading globally. This step prepared hospitals for the new patients that would potentially arrive.
2. Border-control policies were immediately started.
New Zealand’s first COVID-19 case was reported on February 26. The government thought the disease would be more like influenza, but it quickly shifted gears once it was discovered to be more like SARS. The nation went into a nationwide lockdown on March 26. Another two weeks at a slightly lower level essentially stopped the viral tracks for good.
3. Empathic leadership brought people together.
In the United States, the leadership approach from states and the federal government created an “us vs. them” environment with the general public. New Zealand (and the other countries that successfully eradicated COVID-19) brought people together. It became a unified approach to defeat the virus.
4. The general population remained consistent.
You won’t find arguments about wearing masks or taking safety precautions in New Zealand as you will in the United States. Even with the fall surge in 2020, everyone stayed consistent with their activities. That’s why the island nation’s biggest number since the lockdowns is 25 new cases, experienced on October 21.
COVID-19 spreads when people stop being vigilant. Taking care of yourself with products from brands like Sunwarrior and Results RNA can give your immune system the boost it needs. The world can contain this virus, but it will take a global effort to make it happen – even with vaccines available.