Covid 0, masks 1

At the moment Australia has a large Delta covid outbreak, and a small Alpha outbreak. Not that our numbers are all that big in comparison to other countries – there are 455 people with covid in Australia at the moment (and that includes those who are in hotel quarantine after arriving in Australia – every international arrival has to spend 14 days in hotel quarantine at their own expense when they arrive in Oz). In total, we’ve had 22,880 cases since the pandemic started (and sadly, 910 deaths).

What is different for those of us in the territory I live in (the Australian Capital Territory) is this is the first time since the pandemic began that we have had to wear masks when out and about (public indoor spaces, public transport and any large gatherings outdoors). We don’t actually have any cases here, the masks are just a precaution in case someone brings covid into the territory (and as of midnight tonight they will no longer be mandatory again). In fact, today marks one whole year (yes, 365 days) since we have had a locally acquired case of covid in out territory. Touchwood that doesn’t change.

We’ve had a combination of luck and good management for which I am very grateful. How’s covid life where you are?

Flashback to 1919 and promotion of the wearing of masks – an excerpt from a public health poster about the Spanish Influenza pandemic (drawn by May Gibbs, the author/illustrator of children’s books, such as “Snugglepot & Cuddlepie”). Soldiers returning from WWI and infected people were quarantined, wearing masks in public was compulsory, schools were closed and many activities banned or restricted and pharmacy prices were regulated.
From: National Archives of Australia

14 comments on “Covid 0, masks 1

  1. Giggling Fattie

    July 9, 2021 at 11:16 pm

    So you know a little about the situation in Ontario, but we are getting better! we had *googles* 210 new cases and 4 new deaths reported yesterday. On the 7th, we had ZERO DEATHS!!! First time since October 2020.

    Our vaccines are up as well *googles some more* 68.33% have first doses and 42.78% have second. Proud to say my entire immediate family is in that second group 😃

    To put this in persecutive, in Ontario on April 16th (the day after my birthday haha) we had the highest new daily cases over this whole pandemic with 4736 reported that day. And around that time we were averaging around 40-45 deaths per day. Our highest death count was back in January though with 85-90 for a bit. So we have come a loooonnnngggg way to just hovering around the 200 new daily cases mark.

    Delta is still an issue here. But with vaccinations going up and the ability to gather outside a better option for most people now, our numbers are going down. We have a new 3-stage reopening plan and are almost to the last stage. This time however, instead of by regions we are doing it by sectors. Then we don’t have people driving from hardest hit areas (ahem Toronto) into other areas to do things like nails and hair cuts etc and infecting others.

    • It’s great to hear that life is improving for you, GF. And I imagine after your move it will be even better!

  2. I’m so glad to dump the mask! They are hot and steam up my glasses and since I’m vaccinated, do nothing but annoy me! Here, even in California USA, we no longer need to wear one but I understand those who choose to do so. Delta is here but I trust what Pfizer and Moderna say–that their Vaccines counter it. Though they are preparing a booster which I will get.

    Sigh. Oh for a pre-COVID world.

    • I know! I don’t think we appreciated what we had because we didn’t know it could be taken away.

  3. Which proves that America, the self-proclaimed greatest country, is just self proclaimed. We have, as of 10:46 on July 9, have had 34,676,896 cases and 622,213 deaths, and it is on an uptick as the Delta variant becomes dominant in the places that still believe the ranting of one ignorant man.

    • Yeah, Delta is a nasty beast – makes our original covid seem quite tame. I’m fully vax’d but the Barbarians aren’t (they aren’t able to get a vax in Oz yet) which worries me, so I hope they are able to get their shots soon.

  4. The population of Tempe/Mesa, Arizona where I live is 35%–50% vaccinated with *one dose*. The percentage of folks still wearing masks is probably only equal to that. My husband and I are fully vaccinated, but still wearing masks, if anything to put shop workers, etc. at ease. Now if I could only convince my parents to shut off the Fox News and go get vaccinated…

    • The media here have done a great job of doing beat-up stories on the vaccines that have left a lot of people terrified of getting their shots. Luckily, my parents aren’t those people. I hope your folks get theirs soon.

  5. We had mask mandates for the last year, but as of June 15th we aren’t required to wear them anymore. I do, and I’m not alone. Things are getting better, but we’re not out of the woods yet.

    • I think out-of-the-woods is a while away for any country yet. Delta is a rather scary beast and no-one’s vaccination rates seem high enough to combat it (although the UK are giving it a shot).

  6. In France we still wear mask inside, but not anymore in the streets. In my area mostly everybody had the 2 shots of vaccine, and youngers can have it too, so I’m optimistic for the next months!

    • That’s great that young people can get their vax! In Australia, it’s 40 and up with 30 and up about to roll out (unless you are working in a high-risk location or have medical reasons for getting it at a younger age).

  7. Cases are low where I live, and masks are optional in most places for anyone who is fully vaccinated, as I am. I still prefer to be outdoors when gathering with other people, so it’s nice that the weather is more or less cooperative. There are still parts of the US with low vaccination/high Covid rates. I understand that people might have medical/religious/personal issues with vaccines, but the same should not hold true for masks! We’ve made them ridiculously political and have paid the price with many, many unnecessary deaths. I hope your rates stay low; sounds like you all are willing to do the right things!

    • I’m the same, Jenny, in preferring to gather outdoors. The trouble with here is that it is bitterly cold and not at all nice to be outside. As a result, social gatherings are very few and far between.

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