Under the German French epidemic, Switzerlands epidemic has not been widely concerned before. Instead, Germany intercepted 240000 masks, gloves and other news from Switzerland, making the gas bag Switzerland frequent headlines. But the fact is that the epidemic in Switzerland is already very serious.
The novel coronavirus pneumonia case was confirmed in Switzerland in February 25th. Until early March, the epidemic in Switzerland was not serious, and the number of new cases per day remained in double digits. But since mid March, the number of confirmed cases in Switzerland has increased rapidly, with 1393 new cases in the most days. The total number of confirmed cases in Switzerland jumped from 497 on March 10 to 6863 on March 22.
According to Agence France Presse, the hardest hit area in Switzerland is located in the Italian speaking region of Switzerland, next to Lombardy region, the state of Ticino. The population of the whole state of Ticino accounts for 4% of the total population of Switzerland, but the number of confirmed cases has accounted for 16% of the total number of confirmed cases in Switzerland.
Switzerlands Federal Health Minister Alan berset warned Tuesday that hospitals in the state of Ticino are facing saturation. Daniel Koch of the Swiss Federal Public Health Office pointed out that Switzerlands new coronavirus detection kit is in urgent need, and the intensive care unit (ICU) in Ticino state has also been overloaded, and it is likely that there will be no available ICU by the 23rd.
On the evening of March 16, Switzerland launched the highest level of emergency. From midnight to April 19, all shopping malls, restaurants, bars and entertainment places in Switzerland will be closed.
On March 20, the Swiss Federal Commission announced new anti epidemic measures again, including calling on the people to abide by the federal governments regulations, calling on all citizens who have received medical care training to report to the state government, banning more than five people from public gatherings, keeping a distance of at least two meters between people, and investing 32 billion Swiss francs (about 231.2 billion yuan) as aid funds to help in need Industry and group, etc. However, Switzerland does not impose a mandatory travel ban, and daily life security sites and facilities operate as usual.
Dialogue with Chinese students in Switzerland
Close to the three major epidemic stricken countries, large flow of people or important reasons for the rapid spread of the epidemic
Beijing News: when did you decide to go back to China? With the rapid development of the epidemic in Switzerland, what changes have taken place in the mentality of overseas students?
He Kai: I chose to go back to China in early March when the Swiss epidemic began to break out rapidly. At that time, the domestic epidemic gradually stabilized, but there were not so many cases imported from abroad. After arriving in Beijing, after screening, I went to Henan, where I conducted a 14 day self isolation.
In fact, at the beginning, we all thought that the Swiss epidemic would not have a great impact. The outbreak in Switzerland was relatively late, and the country began to stabilize. The first confirmed case was found here. Switzerland has a relatively developed medical system and a relatively high sense of well-being among its residents. The local people are more optimistic and have little pressure, so they ignore the epidemic situation. In addition, Swiss people do not live as crowded as Germany and France, and they live in a scattered way, so most people dont think there will be problems such as clustering infection.
But by the early March, when the epidemic broke out quickly, we were in a panic. In particular, the University of Zurich, where I work, is probably the one with the highest number of confirmed cases among all universities. I remember when 26 cases were first diagnosed in Zurich, 12 of them were at the University of Zurich. However, even if there are so many confirmed cases in our school, our school has not suspended classes. The school sends us messages every day, but it says that we have nothing to do, we can continue our classes, we cant interrupt our teaching, etc. It was not until the Swiss federal government announced the national suspension of classes that the University of Zurich announced the suspension. As a result, our group of Chinese students are quite flustered, so many of them choose to go back to China.
Beijing News: whats unique about the epidemic in Switzerland?
He Kai: the most peculiar thing is wearing a mask. Switzerland is a special country. The local people are usually very friendly. Because of cultural differences and other factors, they basically dont wear masks to go out, because they think that wearing masks means that they have been ill, and obviously they should not go out. So if we wear masks when we go out, it will attract very strong attention, but fortunately, they will not be particularly unfriendly. Once an old woman was very kind to me and said, if you are not ill, you dont need to wear a mask. Im afraid that I will be treated unfriendly..
In fact, in Switzerland and in other countries such as the United Kingdom and the United States, the feelings of overseas students are still different. In the United States and other countries, there are a lot of Chinese students and other Asian countries, so there will be more people wearing masks, and there will be a big environment of wearing masks. But Switzerland is a relatively small country. There are very few overseas students in Asia. If you wear a mask, it will be very abrupt. This also leads to greater psychological stress.
There is also a strange point about masks. In public, almost no European wearing masks can be seen, but Swiss cant buy masks for a long time. Before we wanted to buy masks, we found that all pharmacies in Zurich had no masks. I went to Konstanz, Germany to buy it. It was basically out of stock. Finally, I bought a mask which is said to have no protective effect in a small shop on the Swiss border. The price is very high.
Whats more, unlike other countries that have been hit hard by the epidemic, there has been no panic buying in Switzerland. The supply of goods in the supermarket has always been sufficient, and people will not go to store goods specially. Until recently, when Switzerland declared a state of emergency, people would only prepare a little more, but they did not rush to buy.
Kai Kai: novel coronavirus pneumonia is now a new global epicentre in the world. Compared with neighboring Italy, Germany and France, Switzerland is more special. I think that on the whole, the rapid spread of the epidemic in Switzerland is inseparable from the countrys history, culture, geography and economy.
First of all, Switzerland is in the middle of the European continent, with many neighboring countries and close ties with surrounding cities. Switzerland has four official languages, including German, French, Italian and Romanian, which are spoken almost anywhere near. However, the epidemic situation in Italy, Germany and France is very serious, and Switzerland, surrounded by the three, is obviously unable to live alone.
In particular, the flow of people in Switzerland is very large, which makes it easy for people from many neighboring countries to bring the virus to Switzerland. Switzerland is one of the countries with the highest wages in the world. Many people from neighboring countries come to work in Switzerland. Most of them live in their own countries and then come to work in Switzerland by train every day.
Secondly, I dont think the measures of the Swiss government are enough at the beginning of the outbreak. Switzerland is close to Lombardy region in Italy in the South and Baden Wurttemberg in Germany in the north. The epidemic situation in these areas is very serious. And Switzerland has not stopped the trains to and from these countries. Tens of thousands of people come to work in Switzerland every day, which greatly increases the risk of infection. In addition, Switzerland is very dependent on its neighbors, almost everything is imported, so it cant be completely closed like some other countries, which leads to the rapid spread of the epidemic in Switzerland.
Beijing News: Switzerland has always been regarded as a big welfare country. How do you think this will affect its epidemic prevention and control?
Hekai: Switzerland has always been known as one of the best welfare countries in the world, which is very obvious in the epidemic situation. First of all, from the economic point of view, the government of the Swiss Confederation can really be said to be financially rich, providing 32 billion Swiss francs as aid funds to targeted help industries and groups in need, especially to protect apprentices and those unable to work normally due to prevention and control measures. At the same time, it will also help businesses, freelancers, parents who are unable to work because of the closure of schools, etc. I know some people who work in Switzerland. They dont worry about the impact of the epidemic at all, because even if they stay at home and dont do anything, they can get 80% of their salary, and they dont have to worry about being fired from the company.
In terms of medical treatment, Switzerland has several pharmaceutical giants, whose medical level ranks at the top of the world. In Switzerland, people who are ill can get very good treatment. Maybe thats one reason why most people dont panic. They always feel fearless. In daily life, the Swiss federal government also said that it had a lot of materials in reserve and would slowly distribute them to everyone.
Beijing News: in the process of epidemic prevention and control in Switzerland, what do you feel deeply about?
Secondly, the quality of Swiss citizens is relatively high. As long as the government has issued relevant policies, it will follow them well. They are also rational and restrained. Up to now, there is no hoarding. I think this is also very important for epidemic prevention.
In addition, I think Switzerland is equivalent to a gas bag, which is seized by various neighboring countries. Switzerland is a permanent neutral country. It has always been very friendly to its neighboring countries and feels a bit aloof from the rest of the world. There is no practical way for them to buckle up masks, gloves, protective clothing, etc.
Another intuitive feeling is that when we were in Switzerland, we basically didnt feel the change of Swiss attitude towards Asians. Although they may not understand Asian wearing masks, they were very friendly.
Chinas embassy in China has novel coronavirus pneumonia. The British Embassy has urged Britain to be cautious about turning around and returning to China. The source is: the Beijing News Editor: Yu Hong Hong, _NBJ11060