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Looking beyond the coronavirus: lessons and principles

23 April 2020
5 min read
Volume 29 · Issue 8

Like so many of my colleagues, my mind is preoccupied with the current crisis. For the past few weeks, I have been driving along near-empty roads and making my way to work across a campus that has fallen silent. Now I am self-isolating and working from home. Watching the news and talking with friends on the telephone; sharing stories of shop and school closures, it seems surreal; like a disaster movie about some future apocalyptic event.

However, unlike many of my colleagues, I have not been reflecting on National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance or other clinical protocols—necessary and praiseworthy as these may be. Instead, my reflections have been looking beyond the novel coronavirus, and its impact on mortality and morbidity, to the future and the opportunities that may present themselves. Some commentators are saying that our world will never be the same again. I hope they are right. There are important lessons to be learnt and principles to be espoused that form a collective hangover from the socioeconomic and political debates of the previous century.

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