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17 March 2020

SOCIAL DISTANCING: AN EFFECTIVE PRACTICE TO HELP STOP COVID-19

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SOCIAL DISTANCING: AN EFFECTIVE PRACTICE TO HELP STOP COVID-19

March 17, 2020 – As the COVID-19 outbreak continues, many measures are being put in place around the world to minimize the spread of the virus. Dr. Gérard-Philippe Zéhil, Assistant Professor at the Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU) Faculty of Engineering (FE), has created a model to assess the effectiveness of the steps taken in Lebanon with promising results. Dr. Zéhil downloaded all the reports of cases of COVID-19 from the Lebanese Ministry of Health’s website, since the first reported case on February 23, 2020, and plotted them on a curve.

 

According to Dr. Zéhil’s findings, the initial infection rate could be plotted on an exponential curve and saw cases of COVID-19 in Lebanon double every four days. However, recent measures taken to curb the spread of the virus, particularly the trend of social distancing – where people remain indoors and isolate themselves to avoid catching/spreading the disease – have resulted in a reduction in the initial rate of infection. It appears that the measures taken to keep COVID-19 contained are working and that by continuing the practice of social distancing the rates of infection should continue to decrease.

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