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  • Writer's pictureThe Bella Blog

Week 5 - How to flatten a curve - Corona Costa Rica

Hope you are all doing well. We are in week 5 of self isolation here in Costa Rica. We're working on a video to update you on what life has been like for us. So stay tuned!

In the meantime, here are a couple of items I'd like to share with you.

The first is written by a proud Tica who writes about how Costa Rica is handling the crisis and below that is an excellent video showing the comparison between NY and Costa Rica. So happy we are here!

I hope you will take time to look at both.

Oh and BTW, I think, another reason that Costa Rica is doing so well is because they are being very vigilant about posting the number of actual deaths (not suspected deaths).

In the US the CDC has admitted the numbers have increased due to their coding.

"Cases in which COVID-19 are merely suspected to be a cause of death are being recorded as official COVID-19 deaths." Source

Blessed my country!

By Lina Barrantes Castegnaro

Several years ago, talking with a correspondent for the newspaper Le Monde, I noted the absence - during the years of the Central American war - of news about Costa Rica in Europe. He answered me with the saying: “On ne parle pas des trains qui arrivent a l’heure” (there is no mention of trains arriving on time). In the midst of the COVID-19 emergency, full of "fake news" and dramatic news, I think we should refer to the case of Costa Rica. Costa Rica had its first case of Coronavirus on March 6, 2020. And the growth curve of the epidemic has been flattening more and more. The government has imposed measures, not as drastic as absolute confinement, however our economy will come out very, very battered from this crisis. But what has this epidemic taught us Latin Americans? It has taught us, with the example of Costa Rica, that investment in education is the most important that a country can make: the Costa Rican, disorderly, accustomed to doing what he wants, because he does not know military discipline, understands instructions, (so unlike other countries where the army has been thrown onto the streets to ensure that people respect social distance, and respect schedules, and restrictions), Costa Ricans basically do. This investment in education led the country to have a Clorito Picado Institute, ready to manufacture an auto-immune serum with the plasma of patients who have healed, to treat the infected. It is the public universities that in one week designed and tested a prototype respirator that we are going to manufacture ourselves. In the infrastructure for basic education, there are the school canteens, today closed by the epidemic, but distributing food to the children who usually had lunch in those schools. The other lesson is investing in health: Costa Rica starts this epidemic with approximately 600 respirators (a quick search on the internet says that its neighbors, all with much more population, (started, Nicaragua with 100, Guatemala with 60 and Honduras with 100). Two weeks after the crisis started, Costa Rica already has 800. By April 3, Costa Rica had only 23 people hospitalized (13 in the ICU), but it is preparing. In these two weeks, we built a hospital with the capacity of 88 new beds for intensive care. The time gained from the epidemic has allowed the country to prepare even better. Why is Costa Rica so different? A simple reason: because on December 1, 1948, the victorious general of the last revolution, decided to abolish the army, and since then, this small country has dedicated the military budget to education. The train arrives on time. For 71 years, Costa Rica has been preparing to fight the worst enemies of a people: hunger, ignorance and disease. Those enemies are not beaten with bullets or missiles.


Costa Rica -

A tiny country of 5,000,000 leading the way...

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