The reopening of gyms, restaurants and hotels poses the greatest danger of spreading COVID-19, a recent study published in journal Nature has revealed. As part of the study, the researchers analyzed the movement data of 98 million people to model the risk of infections in different locations. The research shows that a deadly virus has already infected 52,129,134 people and the infection is still spreading rapidly.
The study was conducted by a team of researchers from Stanford University and Northwestern University, who collected data from 98 million people in U.S. states between March and May to map people’s movement. Then they looked at where they went, how long they stayed, how many others there were, and which neighborhoods they came from. They then combined that information with data on the number of cases and how the virus spreads to create infection models.
Using these infection models, they then predicted the amount of infection if a particular public place was reopened. For example, they predicted that if all Chicago restaurants were to reopen, they would cause as many new infections, three times as many as other categories. In addition, the survey also found that nearly 10 percent of the sites surveyed were responsible for 85 percent of the predicted infections.
Read: Smriti Irani tests negative for COVID-19
Read: 76 new cases push Arunachal’s COVID-19 count to 15,657
Precautions and Reopening Strategies
The models produced in the study also suggested that complete lockdowns were not necessary to keep the virus at bay. But precautions such as masks, social aloofness, and reduced capacity can all significantly help manage the pandemic. In addendum, the scientists also suggested doing trial and error when choosing the reopening strategies.
“We need to think about strategies to reopen the economy. This allows us to test different reopening scenarios and assess what that would mean for the spread of the virus, ”said Jure Leskovec, a Stanford University scientist and lead author of the paper.
Without measures to reduce the virus, the newspaper predicted that a third of the population could become infected with the virus. With more than 52 million infections, the virus continues to hit the masses, shutting down many of the European countries.
Read: Unwanted Milestone: California Nears Million COVID-19 Cases
Read: Video: Italian man serenades COVID-19 positive woman from streets, netizens wish them the best