There will not be a second wave of coronavirus but the current worldwide situation will continue, one of the experts advising the government on the coronavirus outbreak told CNA on Wednesday.
Constantinos Tsioutis, assistant Professor of Internal Medicine and Infection Prevention and Control at the European University and specialist with training in infection control, noted that on a global basis an increase in cases is being recorded.
On this global basis, he said, we are currently still in the first wave.
“What we see will happen over the next months is that the first wave will continue at the same rate. We hope that it will not be so fast. However, it will continue into the Autumn. So, what we will probably see is a continuation of the current situation, because otherwise the second wave will mean a significant drop and then a new rise,” Tsioutis pointed out.
Tsioutis said that the situation globally is not good and thus one should not be deceived by the good picture in Cyprus.
He said the airports are open and we must be careful, noting that the virus had two characteristics that made it dangerous, one being the long incubation period and the second the percentage of asymptomatic cases. Tsioutis said the virus is easily transmitted from one person to another.
Furthermore, he said people are relaxing the measures but “we must understand that the virus is still out there and it is very easy to reappear.”
Regarding vaccines, Tsioutis said there were a couple that were due to enter clinical phase 3, during which it will be tested on thousands of volunteers, which means that by the end of the year things will be more optimistic and there will be at least one effective and safe vaccine.
“The vaccine may be found but the issue at hand is how easily it will become available to the whole world, how many doses will be needed and how long the immunity will last. We believe that the vaccines are the solution on a global basis but we are not expecting them to be available soon,” he said, predicting that “until Spring 2021 we will continue as we are now.”
Asked if the virus was airborne, Tsioutis said this position is nothing new. He said it is known that it is a droplet infection and that sometimes it can be transmitted through the air across greater distances. “This is not new. We knew this,” he said and pointed out that personal protective measures should continue.
He also noted that measures would further relax in Cyprus and pointed out the need to observe the protocols.
“If the protocols are not observed, we should expect to see an increase,” Tsioutis said.
Regarding the use of gloves, Tsioutis said they would not be banned and that professions which always suggested the use of gloves will continue to use them.
“They will not be banned but their use will not be necessary. Distancing and hand hygiene are more important that wearing gloves. If the gloves are not used properly, they could be dangerous,” he pointed out.