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Hi, I am Sebastian, German medical practitioner ("Heilpraktiker“)
and certified naturopath ("profesional naturópata") in Spain.

This is the AUDIO version of my Practical Pandemic Podcast.

Dr. rer. nat. Sebastian Prall

In my Practical Pandemic Podcast, I want to give you practical information on how to support you during the coronavirus pandemic. my ultimate goal is to empower you to stay proactive. In times many people feel passive and desperate you can stay at home and stay proactive!

LOCKDOWN SITUATION
We are currently in a situation no-one has ever experienced before. Many lessons can be learned from this situation on different levels, like the economic level, the society level, the scientific and medical level, the psychologic level, and most importantly, the individual level. Lockdown has helped to flatten the curve of infection rates in various countries. This was mainly achieved by physical distancing and people staying at home. However, we are still at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

WHAT LOCKDOWN MEANS
Because of the lockdown our every-day-life has changed tremendously. Basic rights are largely restricted, for example your personal freedom of working, assembly, or practicing religion. Schools are closed and people are working in home-office or are unemployed, due to the economic lockdown. In some countries, like Spain where I live, you can´t even go for a walk!

STRATEGIES to EXIT LOCKDOWN
We need to find strategies to exit lockdown to get our life back. This requires that everyone contributes to keep the curve flat, as well as solidarity between individuals and states. 

FUTURE
finding drugs to treat the coronavirus disease. a vaccination will ultimately stop the pandemic in the future. 

EPISODE 1 – PHYSICAL DISTANCING & HYGIENE

PHYSICAL DISTANCING and HYGIENE MEASURES are KEY to PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19. Flattening the curve of infected people, was mainly achieved by limiting physical distancing. In order to reverse lockdown, hygiene measures are key. Additionally, TRACKING APPs will make it possible to further reverse lockdown. The most important hygiene measures are Hand-Washing (Most important), Breathing masks and (maybe) Gloves.

Reversing lockdown successfully will require that people understand the great impact of hygiene measures and know how to apply these hygiene measures properly.

Protecting yourself means protecting the others and vice versa. In this regard, APPLYING HYGIENE MEASURES is a practice of SOCIAL SOLIDARITY, rather than an egoistic way of protecting yourself.

EPISODE 2 – HOW COVID 19 SPREADS

In the PRACTICAL PANDEMIC PODCAST, I want to give you PRACTICAL INFORMATION on how to SUPPORT YOU during the coronavirus pandemic.
MY ULTIMATE GOAL is to EMPOWER YOU to STAY PROACTIVE. In times many people feel passive and desperate YOU CAN STAY AT HOME and STAY PROACTIVE!

LOCKDOWN SITUATION
We are in a situation NO-ONE has ever experienced before. MANY LESSONS can be learned from this situation on different levels, like the economic level, the society level, the scientific and medical level, the psychologic level, and most importantly, the individual level. LOCKDOWN has helped to FLATTEN THE CURVE of infection rates in various countries. This was MAINLY achieved by PHYSICAL DISTANCING and PEOPLE STAYING AT HOME. However, we are still at the BEGINNING of the coronavirus pandemic.

WHAT LOCKDOWN MEANS
Because of the LOCKDOWN our EVERY-DAY-LIFE has CHANGED tremendously. Basic rights are largely restricted, for example your personal freedom of working, assembly, or practicing religion. Schools are closed and people are working in home-office or are unemployed, due to the economic lockdown. In some countries, like Spain where I live, you can´t even go for a walk!

STRATEGIES to EXIT LOCKDOWN
We need to find STRATEGIES to EXIT LOCKDOWN to get our life back. This requires that EVERYONE contributes to KEEP THE CURVE FLAT, as well as SOLIDARITY between INDIVIDUALS and STATES.

FUTURE
FINDING DRUGS to treat the coronavirus disease. A VACCINATION will ultimately stop the pandemic in the FUTURE.

REFERENCES
1              van Doremalen, N. et al. Aerosol and Surface Stability of SARS-CoV-2 as Compared with SARS-CoV-1. N Engl J Med, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/32182409, doi:10.1056/NEJMc2004973 (2020).
2              Leung, N. H. L. et al. Respiratory virus shedding in exhaled breath and efficacy of face masks. Nature Medicine, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2, doi:10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2 (2020).

EPISODE 3 – PHYSICAL DISTANCING & COUGH-ETIQUETTE

Physical distancing is limiting the spread of COVID-19. Therefore, a physical distance of 1-2 meters (best more than 2 m) is necessary.

PHYSICAL DISTANCING means SOCIAL SOLIDARITY. Flattening the curve of infected people, was mainly achieved by limiting physical distancing, by AVOIDING GATHERINGS (Sports events, Concerts, Theatre, Cinema, Bars, Restaurants) and PHYSICAL CONTACT (Kissing, Hugging, Handshake).

Sticking to the COUGH-ETIQUETTE is a matter of SOCIAL SOLIDARITY, too. Avoid coughing or sneezing in the public and when you are sick: STAY AT HOME! The Cough-Etiquette includes to: A) Keep distance to and TURN AWAY from others when sneezing or coughing; B) Cough INTO your upper arm or FLEXED ELBOW, whilst avoiding to use your hands; C) Using a disposable handkerchief. Always: WASH YOUR HANDS after blowing your nose, sneezing or coughing in your hands!

EPISODE 4 – HAND-WASHING

HAND-WASHING is the MOST IMPORTANT HYGIENE MEASURE to limit the spread of COVID-19 disease.

The ONLY ALTERNATIVE to hand-washing is to use an alcohol-based hand rub if you don’t have immediate access to soap and water.

Only if EVERYONE knows how to wash his or her hands properly, we will be able to successfully exit lockdown by still keeping the curve flat. Sticking to Hand-Washing means SOCIAL SOLIDARITY.

Find the WHO- recommendations on hand-washing here: https://www.who.int/gpsc/clean_hands_protection/en/

In this spirit: MAKE SURE YOUR HANDS ARE CLEAN and PRACTICE SOCIAL SOLIDARITY!

REFERENCES
1              Leung, N. H. L. et al. Respiratory virus shedding in exhaled breath and efficacy of face masks. Nature Medicine, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2, doi:10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2 (2020).

EPISODE 5 – BREATHING MASKS

Breathing masks can limit the spread of COVID-19.

There are 2 different kinds of masks, RESPIRATORS and SURGICAL MASKS. Both types of masks are being used to prevent infection of others via the air. Because of limited availability and costs, respirators are currently reserved for medical staff only.

All kinds of masks – also respirators – are leaky on the sides and don´t offer a 100% protection. Their availability is currently limited, they get wet whilst wearing and can only be worn for maximum 4 hours, they are intended for single use only. A good alternative are textile masks.

Both, respirators and surgical masks are able to filter droplets from the air. Only Respirators are able to effectively filter virus particles from aerosols. Simple textile masks – like surgical masks – can only filter droplets from the air, but not aerosols.

Wearing a MASK means SOCIAL SOLIDARITY
Studies have shown, that breathing masks greatly reduce the emission of corona virus particles that are exhaled by infected persons1. If you are wearing a breathing mask, you are therefore rather protecting others than yourself. If everyone in the public was wearing a breathing mask, infections via hands and air would become less likely. Wearing a breathing mask is a way to reverse lockdown.

References
Leung, N. H. L. et al. Respiratory virus shedding in exhaled breath and efficacy of face masks. Nature Medicine, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2, doi:10.1038/s41591-020-0843-2 (2020).

EPISODE 6 – GLOVES

Do gloves help limiting the spread of disease?
Yes and no. On the plus side, contagious persons might spread less virus from their hands. A positive psychological effect is that you are constantly reminded not to touch your mouth, nose or eyes with your hands, when wearing gloves. However: The virus might stick stronger to gloves than to your skin and you might become more careless to touch potentially virus-contaminated surfaces, when wearing gloves. Also, gloves produce a lot of plastic trash. Do not disinfect gloves, they might get perforated!

Conclusion
The use of gloves is still controversially discussed between health professionals. The WHO states: “The use of gloves does not replace the need for appropriate hand hygiene”. Therefore, WASHING YOUR HANDS is the best HYGIENE MEASURE to LIMIT THE SPREAD OF COVID-19. Think, if gloves will really help you in the public or not, before you use them.