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National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) research: chance of contracting corona indeed smaller by keeping distance (retrieved from Dagblad van het Noorden, in Dutch). People who adhere to the advice to keep 1.5 meters distance from others, run less risk of contracting the corona virus. That is the outcome of a study conducted by the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM). It shows that “social distancing is an important measure to stop the spread of the virus,” says the RIVM.

Infection rate 27 Percent lower by keeping social distance

The researchers analyzed data from 7,000 people who filled out regular questionnaires about their contacts during the first corona wave. Their blood was also tested for antibodies, which can be used to show that someone has been in contact with the virus. At the time, 5.5 percent of the people who did not follow the distance rules had antibodies in their blood. Of the participants who said they did, 4 percent made antibodies. Thus, among those who kept their distance, the infection rate was 27 percent lower.

Large group meetings lead to more infections

Large group meetings also lead to more infections, the study shows. Of the people who indicated that they had attended a meeting in an indoor space with more than 20 people, 6.2 percent were found to have antibodies in their blood. That percentage was one and a half times higher than among people who indicated that they had not attended any meetings at all.

1 in 5 of blood donors have antibodies

Meanwhile, many more people have antibodies in their blood. A random sample from the Sanquin blood bank recently showed that this concerns more than one in five blood donors. Among them are also people who have been vaccinated.

The research results of the RIVM were published in the scientific journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. They also show that people who had particularly close contact with children under the age of 10 hardly became infected with the virus. “There were no more antibodies in the blood of these participants than in participants who indicated they had no contact at all.”

New virus variants, such as the British variant that is now dominant, did not exist when the study was conducted. “Precisely because of the higher infectivity of these variants, it is important to keep a sufficient distance,” says the RIVM.

Covid Buzzer helps to keep social distance

Social Distancing, wearing a mouth mask, proper marking and hand washing help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Solutions like the Covid Buzzer help maintain social distance.

More than half (51 percent) of all elementary school in the Netherlands sent one or more classes home last week because of Covid 19.

“The AVS estimates that nearly 220,000 elementary school students were quarantined at home, out of a total of about 1.6 million students. According to the poll, 1.3 percent of elementary schools were forced to close completely because of corona attacks ” (Metro Nieuws)

Staffing shortage

Metro continues: “According to President Petra van Haren, the pressure is on school leaders. ‘They are constantly looking for substitutes to prevent children from having to go home,” she says. Of the school leaders who participated in the survey, 60 percent had to use substitutes last week. “Because of the staffing shortage, that’s not easy,’ Van Haren says.”

1 Child infected, whole class at home

If in a class a child or teacher is infected with the coronavirus, the entire class must go home. For at least five days as a precaution. Unless they work in small groups that are not close to each other. In most elementary schools, however, this does not happen. Many schools find it practically unworkable. Those who get tested five days after contact with the infected child and get a negative result may return to school. Children who do not test may return to school only after ten days, provided they have no symptoms.

How sensors help

Sensors like the Airmex help monitor air quality to ensure that the Covid 19 virus is as inactive as possible. And to ensure that temperature and humidity levels are optimal for a pleasant stay and an optimal environment for performance. They also measure CO2. CO2 is another important air quality parameter.

Since Covid-19, there is even more attention for indoor air quality. It might be possible that poor ventilation may contribute to the spread of the coronavirus. In any case, some contaminations are already known to decrease indoor air quality. Poor Humidity, Temperature, CO2 and TVOC conditions may be the cause. It influences productivity, leads to less sense of comfortability and well-being and can cause sickness. Beat poor indoor Air Quality with data science.

Indoor concentration of pollution often 2 to 5 times higher than outdoor

Did you ever wonder where you are most exposed to air pollution? Somewhere outside, you say? Wrong, you breath the most polluted air… indoors! Research shows, that people spend 90% of their time indoors. Isolation and modern heating have brought us comfy, warm indoor environments: home, work, recreation, etc., with no cold air coming from under the doors or through windows. However, in many buildings there is a downside. With the tightly enclosed indoor environments, pollution caused indoors or coming from outside has no opportunity to mingle with fresh air. For viruses, heat and certain levels of humidity are perfect environments to stay active.

Pollution may lead to:

  • Irritation of the throat, nose and eyes, such as a dry throat
  • Headaches, dizziness, and fatigue
  • Respiratory diseases, heart disease, and cancer

Covid-19

Besides, the Covid-19 virus is spreading. Since Covid-19, there is a lot of attention for indoor door quality. Besides social distancing, wearing a mask and washing your hands, good ventilation is one of the measures to reduce the risk of infection indoors.

CO2 and TVOC measurement for well-being and productivity

Indoor air quality is depending on… inside and outside factors… Besides temperature and humidity, 2 other factors for indoor air quality are CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) and TVOC (Total Volatile Organic Compounds).

CO2 originates when people breathe, sweat and in all other occasions where there is a burning process involved. CO2 concentration has to remains less than 800 PPM. At higher concentrations people begin to suffer.

Besides, many substances are also source of contamination like cleaning products, paints, varnishes, furniture and glues. These are called Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s). Immediate complaints may be symptoms headaches, eye, nose and throat irritation and bad odors. Long term exposure may lead in large doses can damage liver, nervous systems and kidneys.

The impaction of the combination of CO2 and TVOC is even larger. A study shows: “On average, cognitive scores were 61% higher on the Green building day and 101% higher on the two Green+ building days than on the Conventional building day.” 

Data Science helps you to maintain healthy and productive air quality

Temperature and Ventilation are more important than ever. Regulate your temperature to obtain a comfortable and healthy environment. Replace bad air with fresh air from outside. By ventilation or just by opening a window.

When you’re busy, keeping an eye on working conditions may be easily ignored. Sensors which measure temperature and humidity like the Airmex help you to maintain your indoor air quality such, that the risk of spreading the viruses is as least as possible They also help you to keep a comfortable, healthy and productive environment. It warns you on an app when you should adjust your room temperature or when you should ventilate. Those signals are based on data science and based on guidelines as the ASHRAE Standard 55 – Thermal Environmental conditions for Human Occupancy.

Find out how the Airmex can help you.

Vanaf gisteren zit Nederland in een harde lockdown. Het AD: “Lang was een harde lockdown iets voor andere landen, wij deden het ‘intelligent’ of ‘gedeeltelijk’. Maar nu pakt het kabinet toch de grote hamer en gaat Nederland een maand lang bijna helemaal op slot. Waar ging het mis?”

Daarbij noemt het AD 4 redenen:

  1. Gedrag: de pure angst is weg
  2. Scholen: ‘kinderen wellicht onderschat’
  3. Seizoenseffect: ‘Speelt zeker mee’
  4. Beleid: ‘Te traag, te laat’

Social Distance

Het artikel noemt dat in het begin van het jaar veel mensen thuis bleven vanwege angst zelf corona te krijgen. Nu blijkt dat niet iedereen met covid-19 meteen op de IC komt, is deze angst verdwenen. Daarbij is de rek er bij mensen uit, om gedragsregels na te leven.

Dat uit zich in het feit dat mensen veel minder thuis blijven: meer winkelen, meer reizen en steeds vaker op het werk. Daarbij wordt tevens de social distance niet altijd in acht gehouden: naast het zoveel mogelijk thuis blijven het handhaven van de social distance een van de voornaamste manieren om covid verspreiding tegen te gaan.

Een andere reden is dat de verspreiding van Covid bij kinderen, vooral die tussen 12 en 18 jaar, onderschat is. 8,5% van de herleidbare besmettingsbronnen van de afgelopen week was te herleiden naar school of kinderopvang. Daarnaast is het moeilijk grip te krijgen op de verspreiding onder de jeugd: de meeste jongeren hebben geen of slechts milde klachten. Daardoor kunnen ze corona binnen het gezin en verder verspreiden, die op hun beurt kwetsbare groepen als ouderen kunnen besmetten.

Seizoenseffect

Het artikel: “Weer en klimaat spelen een rol, zegt Osterhaus, al durft hij er geen gewicht aan te hangen. ,,De combinatie van temperatuur, uv-licht en vochtigheid telt mee, ik weet het zeker. Bovendien zitten we meer binnen bij kou en hoesten we elkaar eerder aan. Maar hoe groot het seizoenseffect is weten we nog niet. Feit is dat ook in warme landen dit virus nog altijd problemen geeft.”

Beleid te traag?

“Osterhaus zegt het al maanden, ic-boegbeeld Diederik Gommers pleitte er afgelopen weekeinde ook voor: de regering moet sneller reageren op de curve van het virus. Dat betekent: harder ingrijpen als aantallen oplopen, maar ook eerder versoepelen als corona een tandje terugschakelt.”

Wij durven geen uitspraken te doen of het beleid te traag was. Wel: wanneer Nederlanders de maatregelen als zoveel mogelijk thuis blijven en het handhaven van de social distance hadden nageleefd, zou er waarschijnlijk geen lockdown nodig zijn geweest.

Advanced Solutions Nederland kan helpen met het handhaven van de social distance op het werk, openbare gebouwen en scholen. Juist in situaties waar de social distance wel eens vergeten wordt, kan een covid buzzer helpen. Daarnaast is de Covid Airmex ontwikkeld: een device die controleert of de temperatuur, luchtvochtigheid, vluchtige stoffen en co2 optimaal zijn om de verspreiding van het covidvirus zoveel mogelijk tegen te gaan.

High levels of CO2 at office or home may evoke nuisance, fatigue, headaches and dizziness. It lessens your productivity and general feeling of well-being.

Pfizer announces that its COVID-19 vaccine is 90% effective, based on tests with 44,000 people. The vaccine may be available by the end of the year. Is this the end of covid-19? Thereby, Pfizer herself stresses that the results are based on the third stage of testing. And that testing stage hasn’t been completed yet. We have analyzed the reactions of experts on this news.

The good news: hope on a working vaccine

Obviously, a vaccine that works against corona is good news anyhow. How good, is another question. While most experts say that they can judge the vaccine really if tests are completed and the underlying data is available, most experts are possitive about the news

How good is the vaccine?

Analyzing the reactions of experts, some of important questions to judge the effectiveness of the new vaccine are:

  • what is the duration of protection?
  • is the vaccine protecting the elderly, since the immune system weakens with age?
  • Does the vaccine protect from spreading the virus?
  • ‘scientific questions’ and logistics

What is the duration of protection?

In this stage, it is unclear what the duration of the protection is. Of course, the vaccine is still in its testing stage. Besides, our knowledge of covid-19 has much improved since the outbreak. But due to the youth of this virus, we still know little about it. In the ideal world, we would have a vaccine which would protect a lifetime. If it doesn’t, how long will the protection last?

Is the vaccine protecting the elderly?

It remains unclear if the vaccine is protecting the elderly as well as youthful people. The elderly and weak persons would benefit the most of a working vaccine. They have the largest risk of getting seriously ill. Leading to hospital or even death. But: as age increases, the immune system weakens. The BBC explains this in this article…

Does the vaccine protect from spreading the virus?

The third point which is unclear, is if the vaccine only protects the injected person from getting ill. Or that it protects the vaccinated from spreading the virus as well.

‘Scientific’ questions and logistics

The fourth question are some ‘scientific’ questions and logistics. Many experts state that they need to see the data first before they can make a real judgement (and again: also, Pfizer emphasizes that their message is based on testing results). Besides there’s the point of logistics: when there will be final proof of the effectiveness, Pfizer won’t be able to produce the vaccine for the whole world immediately. So, countries who have bought already the vaccine will go first. Probably, the weak and caretakers will be vaccinated first.

Science Media Centre has collected “reactions to pfizer and biontech reporting interim results from phase 3 covid-19 vaccine trial in this article. We quote from this article the reaction of Prof Jonathan Ball, Professor of Molecular Virology, University of Nottingham: “It’s great news that the Pfizer vaccine is reported to be 90% effective, but it’s important to understand what that means.  For a vaccine to be truly effective it needs to protect those most vulnerable from suffering severe COVID-19 or prevent those less vulnerable from becoming infected and then transmitting the virus to others.  Simply reducing the appearance of symptoms in people who would otherwise have experienced mild infection, is unlikely to have a major benefit.  Indeed, in a worst-case scenario if vaccinated people become infected with the virus and assume they are protected it might mean they can still spread the virus asymptomatically.  Vaccines will be incredibly important in our battle against this virus, but we need to be assured that they will perform as we would hope.”

Following the Covid-19 measures remain important

We believe that, at least before there is a working vaccine largely available, following the Covid-19 measures remain important, such as: wash your hands regularly, wear a mouth mask and keep the social distance. Find out how a Covid buzzer can help you with keeping the social distance here.

Used sources

Where Greece had one of the least Covid cases per million citizens at the beginning of july, the number of cases is rocketing since the end of July/beginning of August. From the 5,623 cases, “1,438 are considered to be related to travel from abroad and 2,705 are related to an already known case. Greece recorded 203 new cases of COVID-19 in 24 hours, the single largest daily number of cases since the pandemic began.” (Greek City Times, 10th August).

Covid cases Greece

Initially, Greece had a large success fighting the coronavirus by an early lockdown in March. Since half June, some lockdown measures have been lifted. The daily cases have steeply increased. ““We must say that the increase in cases is mainly due to the relaxation of compliance to the measures within our country in July. And I believe we all have a responsibility for it. Only 10% of cases are imported, most cases at the moment are domestic,” he (Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis) continued.” (Greek City Times) “Authorities sealed a popular beach bar on Mykonos island after seven employees tested positive for the virus, Skai tv reported, while officials on Ikaria island intervened in a village celebration with dozens of people.” (Anadoulu Agency). Further, the Covid probably spread from travel to and from Balkan countries, which have a high number of cases.

Travel, tests and measures

Out of the 124 cases Saturday, 29 cases where noticed at one of the country’s entrance gates. Because Covid cases were low at the time, Greece began to consider how Greece could be re-opened in May. That meant lifting the non-travel and quarantine regulations. Instead, persons entering Greece are tested on Covid.

Since August 1, the Police have fined 2,042 persons for violating the Covid regulations, 57 shops were shut. “Parties at Chersonissos: ‘We’ve been drinking and cramming on each other every night’” headlines the AD, a newspaper in the Netherlands.

Some measures have already been taken: on Thursday, restrictive measures were imposed on the island of Poros in the Saronic Gulf. At Amplelonas (in Central Greece) measures were taken following the infections on a wedding. These measures included the suspension of events, religious processions and open markets. (Neokosmos)

Last Friday, Nikos Hardalias (Deputy Minister for Civil Protection & Crisis Management) announced the following measures:

  • As of August 12, visitors coming from Malta are required to show proof of a Covid-19 negative molecular test (PCR) taken up to 72 hours prior to arriving in Greece.
  • Following a relevant recommendation of the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece, all processions are suspended indefinitely, as are all rural trade fairs.
  • The measure of banning standing customers in all nightclubs, bars, restaurants and live music venues, currently in effect, is extended until August 31

Earlier that week, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed the importance of the ‘national vaccine’: “which is nothing more than our ‘philotimo’ and together we must follow the measures indicated by the experts and I am sure that if we do we will emerge victorious from this difficult battle as well.”

Find out how the Covid Buzzer can help social distancing

While in the Netherlands and some other countries Covid-19 is increasing because people don’t follow regulations like social distancing and wearing a mask properly, Covid-19 has set a worldwide ‘record’ today.

WHO reports 284,196 new Covid-19 infections in the last 24 hours (July 24). This is a record for the highest increase of corona infections in 1 day. The largest increases were in the US, Brazil, India and South Africa. The previous ‘record’ was one week ago, at July 18.

There were 9,753 deaths, the highest number since April 30. The average number of deaths per day is also increasing: in July 5,000 persons; in June 4,600.

Social distancing, wearing a mask properly and solutions like a covid buzzer help to fight Covid. Find out how we can help you: the Covid Buzzer

#Covid19awareness #Covid19 #Covid-19 #CovidBuzzer #stayhealthy #socialdistancing

Second wave of Covid with hot spots? Or the continuing of the first wave?

At this moment, there’s an increase of Covid-19 infections in the Netherlands. Where the R was below 1, it’s now 1,29. No wonder, it’s busier in the streets, the social distancing easily ignored. Out of Covid-19 tiredness, or simply because the infection rate was going down. So, now it’s 1.29 and there’s a little panic. Because: we don’t want the lockdown again. First there where 6 hot spots, now almost hundred. “Do the corona-hot spots have to be in a local lockdown? Yes, says a vast majority of the Dutch”.

A dense, heavily interconnected population: 1 huge hot spot

It seems we like to explain complicated matters with 1 single number. As if with ‘100’, there is something we can work on, something to contain. That could have been true, when the Netherlands would have been made of quite isolated places. Let’s say a little bush or moor here and there, bring on the fire department and extinguish every fire. Alas, with the dense and in normal circumstances -in the normalized circumstances right now-heavily interconnected population, the ‘100’ bush fires are more like 1 huge dried out bush, where already 100 little fires are going on. Dried out, because like many other countries, many Dutch show they are weary of the Corona regulations. Gathering in large groups are getting common, social distancing ignored. People are wearing their mouth cap under the chin, or put them under the chin while phoning.

Most infections occur at home, according to RIVM. This means that family members infect each other. In recent weeks, contact research has increasingly shown that people also spread the virus at work, during appointments with friends, at parties or in cafés. (Scientias, in Dutch).

Second Corona wave, or still the first one?

Trouw, a Dutch Newspaper: “Infection rates are rising sharply. Is the Netherlands at the beginning of a second corona wave?” Yes, in the Netherlands we have reached an infection rate of 0.6 at its lowest point. Now it is 1.29. So, do we have to be afraid of a second wave? No, we’re still in the middle of the first one. Of course, as a population who has been in lockdown and until now quite successful, we want to have something as reward. Unfortunately, the first corona wave has never been extinguished. Contained by the lockdown, yes. But remained among the population, and probably will not go away anyway until there is a vaccine.

Social Distancing remains important. Solutions like good marking, mouth caps and Covid buzzer help. Find out more about our: Covid Buzzer

A few days ago, the New York Times headlined ” 239 Experts With One Big Claim: The Coronavirus Is Airborne”. At least in the Netherlands, some people are focusing on these aerosols as more are less the only source of infection. According to them, Social distancing would have no use. Should we stop with washing hands, route marking and solutions like the covid buzzer? What does Morawska really say in her article?

Now, Morawska c.s. have publiced their article. In this, she focusses on aerosols as a third way of possible/probable Covid 19 infections, besides direct contact and large droplets:

“Inhaling small airborne droplets is probable as a third route of infection, in addition to more widely recognized transmission via larger respiratory droplets and direct contact with infected people or contaminated surfaces.”

“Inhaling small airborne droplets is probable as a third route of infection, in addition to more widely recognized transmission via larger respiratory droplets and direct contact with infected people or contaminated surfaces. … We believe that the use of engineering controls in public buildings, including hospitals, shops, offices, schools, kindergartens, libraries, restaurants, cruise ships, elevators, conference rooms or public transport, in parallel with effective application of other controls (including isolation and quarantine, social distancing and hand hygiene), would be an additional important measure globally to reduce the likelihood of transmission and thereby protect healthcare workers, patients and the general public.”

Read the full article

In other words: they mention aerosols as a possible / likely distributor of Covid 19, so not as the only explanation. They also mention the widely accepted distributions due to the large droplets and direct contact.

Social distancing remains important, solutions such as washing hands, good marking and covid buzzer help.

Covid-19-keep-corona-distance social distance covid buzzer to stay healthy

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