Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

The Israeli Ministry of health’s coronavirus preventative guidelines are faulty

When you start reading the Israeli Ministry of health’s coronavirus preventative guidelines, you could become overwhelmed by the enormous amount of words but the most important information is not there. And some of it is outright wrong. Let me tell you.

1. When you have no symptoms (or no symptoms anymore), you could still spread the infection. Be tested is the only way to find out. None of the test kits are perfect yet but that’s the best there is.

2. Their short and clear guidelines on how to not get the infection are rather about how not to give the infection to others.


3. Most importantly, start practicing the following now the infection chance is still low. This is how to protect yourself:

A. Wash your hands with soap or alcohol before you eat or touch your mouth’s, nose’s or eyes’s soft tissue. Don’t close the tap with the hands you just washed (use your elbow, clean tissue). Don’t dry them on something others touched who didn’t wash their hands with soap.

Become aware of where your hands are. Don’t absentmindedly touch your face or that of someone else (like someone you feed).

If you do all of this, it might still be best not to shake hands. Why would you network the virus? It is safe to run elbows or embrace with your face away from their face.

B. Don’t let other people touch or prepare your food, set your table or give you utensils unless they washed their hands and didn’t touch the soft tissue of their face. (Someone touching their face while wearing gloves makes the gloves as suspect as unwashed hands.)

C. Don’t let anyone sneeze at you. Avoid crowded places.

D. When others say about your cautiousness: “Wow, you’re so scared to get this?,” tell them: “No, I’m calm because I use my brain and hope.” Or: “No, I’m scared to give you this virus.”

E. Wash all food that you will eat uncooked and then wash your hands. Consider all things others handled (money, credit card) or kissed (mezuzah, Torah scroll, prayerbook) contaminated. Don’t kiss them.

F. Do as the authorities tell you, even if you find their advice over the top.4. Don’t panic and don’t worry.

4. It doesn’t help to get frantic and might even make you make mistakes.

A. Most people will not have any symptoms of the infection. Most people getting sick from it recover completely (98% at least).

B. This might not be an all-or-nothing issue: it’s probably better to get infected with a very small amount of virus than with a lot.

C. Expect to run into many fake YouTube clips to terrify or rob you (see above clip). Use common sense and don’t fall for the scams.

D. Try to think if people promote bogus stuff or reassure falsely just for short-term financial gain for them. Discovering that a reassurance is fake doesn’t mean you should panic.

5. It’s not known if recovering means that you can’t get it again. So far, world-wide, three people who were thought to have healed were found to have the infection. It is not clear if the illness lingered on in them and re-surfaced, if the ‘negative’ test result of being healthy was faulty or if they were re-infected because this immunity is not fully protective.

It is not known yet if this dies down with the passing of winter (like influenza does) but people in Australia (where it is summer now) having it, is not promising.

6. It’s better to suffer some temporary loss (of income, pleasure) than to risk losing your life. If you had a 2% chance to die when crossing a certain street, you would not. This will pass, take it all in stride.

7. If you’re in Israel, you’ll be relatively safe. People are sloppy and make lots of mistakes from stress and being overworked, so watch out for that. But otherwise, medical care is high quality, people care about life-and-death and are not fatalistic, many are world champions in survival.

Researchers are working hard on finding out the best medications to prevent death and on getting to vaccines to prevent the infection. Act as you should to postpone or minimize exposure to the virus so that you and your loved ones will be still here to profit from them.

Now we’re at it, get your regular flue short if you didn’t yet.

8. Tell others to calm down and give them the information.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (statistics), Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having a peek outside of your cultural bubble. * NEW: To see other blog posts by him, his overspill blog you can reach by clicking on the Website icon next to his picture at the head of every post. There you may find precursors to later TOI blog posts, addition or corrections of published TOI blog posts, blog posts the TOI will not carry and some thoughts that are too short to be a TOI blog post. Also, the TOI only allows for one blog post per blogger per 24 hours. Sometimes, he has more to say than that. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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