Commentary

The cataclysmic COVID-19 pandemic: THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING!

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One intervention that is emerging on a large scale is online therapy. This includes reassurance and supportive therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, relaxation techniques, stress management, resilience training, mindfulness, and online group therapy. Those therapies can be effective for stress-induced anxiety and dysphoria when pharmacotherapy is not available, and can provide patients with tools and techniques that can be implemented by the patients themselves in the absence of a physician or nurse practitioner to prescribe a medication.

Lessons learned

This pandemic has taught us many lessons: that life as we know it should not be taken for granted, and can change drastically overnight; that human life is fragile and can be destroyed rapidly and ruthlessly on an unimaginable scale by an invisible enemy; that scientific drug development research by the often maligned pharmaceutical industry is indispensable to our well-being; that policymakers must always prepare for the worst and must have a well-designed disaster plan; that modifying human behavior and full compliance with public health measures are vital and can be the most effective way to prevent the spread of catastrophic pandemics, viral or otherwise; that we must all learn how to be resilient to cope with solitude and restricted mobility or socialization; that the human ingenuity and innovation that created technologies to enable virtual connectivity among us, even when we are isolated, has been a lifesaver during health crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic; that the clinicians and health care workers treating highly infectious and desperately ill patients are genuine heroes who deserve our respect and gratitude; and that magnificent altruism outstrips and outshines the selfish hoarding and profiteering that may emerge during life-threatening pandemics.

And that we shall overcome this horrid pandemic, a ghastly tribulation that changed everything.

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