Regardless of the struggles you may have endured, if you took a poop today, I'd like to personally thank you for your service. It may have seemed like an ordinary, everyday poo in the moment, but as long as our present extraordinary circumstances continue, there's no such thing as a basic bowel movement.
NY POST - Studying human feces in sewer systems worldwide may be the secret to curbing a second wave of COVID-19 until widespread testing is available, researchers said in a report Wednesday.
“Infected patients are excreting the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, in stool,” Newsha Ghaeli, co-founder of wastewater epidemiology firm Biobot, told CBC Radio. “That’s how we end up being able to see the coronavirus, along with a whole bunch of other human health information in our city sewer system.”
I'm going to put aside my concerns about "along with a whole bunch of other human health information" for the time being. I'm not going to worry about what kind of secret data they're obtaining or where it may lead because right now being spied on is the least of our troubles. In this moment, spying is welcome if it means putting an end to Corona or preventing the next wave from shocking the world.
So far, it has collected 300 samples in 40 US states — which researchers then use to measure the concentration of the virus and estimate how badly each area has been hit.
Ghaeli says the firm’s research could be the key to early detection of a second wave of the deadly bug because many countries can’t afford — or don’t have access to — widespread testing.
“We need a way to very easily and rapidly get a snapshot of what’s happening,” she told the outlet. “It’s very important that we have a robust surveillance infrastructure in place to be able to detect any new outbreaks and immediately contain them.”
Honestly, this makes a shit ton of sense.
If every human being on the planet poops (sorry boys), and every human being is susceptible to being infected with COVID-19, and if those infected are showcasing the virus in their feces, then the one thing we all have in common is poop. Crap doesn't discriminate and is a constant equalizer.
“Wastewater helps you to investigate what happens in thousands of guts,” he told the outlet. "Instead of testing each person, you can just stay in a specific area, ‘OK, the virus is probably here because the wastewaters are positive for the virus.'”
So essentially scientists are creating a massive shit map: lots of infected poop, medium infected, little infected poop. Then that map will be our window into understanding the presence of COVID-19 in each community and from that, we can take preventative action based on the monitored shit levels. Genuis!
But of course, every party has a pooper…
“I would caution people from using it as an absolute truth and recognizing that often with models, there can be a high degree of uncertainty,” said Natalie Prystajecky, who began testing wastewater in British Columbia this week.
Whatever. Don't let this lady's soiled attitude stop you from feeling good about the idea of possible good news. In fact, next time you sit on your throne, give yourself a nice pat on the back for contributing to the solution. That's the proper can-doo-doo spirit.