The Third Wave of COVID-19: a new perspective to the pandemic?

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr. Natan Viana Medeiros and Ms. Yasmin Lima Nogueira, two 1st-year medical student at Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora (UFJF) in Juiz de Fora, Brazil. They are affiliated with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

The coronavirus disease is an infectious illness caused by a recently discovered virus: the SARS-CoV-2, or simply coronavirus, that rapidly spreaded and created a global pandemic. So far, it has caused numerous human losses and political crises all around the world. Fundamentally, since 2019, the COVID-19 pandemic has been divided in waves: from the first wave, to the third one, until now.

The First Wave is the beginning of the pandemic. It represents a lot of cases and a high peak of transmission. With government measures, such as social distancing and quarantine, the number of cases tend to decrease, leading the population to a state of relaxation, induced by a false feeling of safety. That usually causes the resumption of economic and social activities, which can lead to The Second Wave. The Second Wave is related to a slight rise in cases, normally related to failure to obtain general immunity followed by pharmacologic interventions such as vaccines.

Besides the increase of COVID-19 cases over again, a Third Wave means that the Health Care System is strongly stressed, beyond the point that non-covid diseases and side effects of the coronavirus are indirectly neglected and the demand for services is no longer distributed. That reaffirms even more the Health Care System stress, since it involves other acute conditions and chronic diseases, that are now at greater risk, such as heart and respiratory diseases, obesity, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, mental illness, among others, causing avoidable deaths.

Also, it has been proven that the contamination by Sars-CoV-2 can facilitate the development of some side effects or other serious conditions, like neuronal injury, ischaemia, hypoxia and even Parkinson disease. In summary, the COVID-19 illness can produce cognitive and functional decline that also deserves attention from the health system, along with all other conditions that remained underestimated by the same system during this time.

That said, it is possible to deduce that the overload of the health system is being intensified, once the present government measures are not evolving along with the significant amount of new information about the virus, how it spreads and its contamination. Obviously, the knowledge about the virus has grown over time, so it is plausible to say that new data require new measures, or at least, a new discussion.

Thereby, the lessons learned in the past should be used to build or update the government, population and Health Care System actions, in order to improve the management of demand and offer of services, so as to contemplate the recent context brought by The Third Wave, that could be minimized, redistributed and elucidated long-term.


Baker, Hanan A et al. “The ‘third wave’: impending cognitive and functional decline in COVID-19 survivors.” British journal of anaesthesia vol. 126,1 (2021): 44-47. doi:10.1016/j.bja.2020.09.045

Beauchamp, Leah C et al. “Parkinsonism as a Third Wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic?.” Journal of Parkinson’s disease vol. 10,4 (2020): 1343-1353. doi:10.3233/JPD-202211

MENDES, EUGÊNIO VILAÇA. “O lado oculto de uma pandemia: a terceira onda da Covid-19 ou o paciente invisível.” (2020).

About the authora

Natan Viana Medeiros is a 1st-year medical student at Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora (UFJF) in Juiz de Fora, Brazil. He is a member of the International Federation of Medical Students Associations of Brazil (IFMSA-Brazil). Yasmin Lima Nogueira is a 1st-year medical student at Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora (UFJF) in Juiz de Fora, Brazil. She is a member of the International Federation of Medical Students Associations of Brazil (IFMSA-Brazil).

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Skills, not job titles, are the new metric for the labour market

‘BioSolar Leaves’ are better at cleaning the air than trees, say the technology’s developers

Collective action to enable sustainable growth will be critical to end tropical deforestation

Boom in Artificial Intelligence patents, points to ‘quantum leap’ in tech: UN report

‘We can’t stop COVID-19 without protecting health workers’: WHO chief

EU budget: the Common Agricultural Policy beyond 2020

What do Europeans believe about the crisis and the possible way out?

At last a good price for the Greek debt!

Team Europe: EU provides €100 million to Mozambique for education, health and social protection

Cambodia’s digital currency can show other central banks the way

China hopes EU Commissioner De Gucht drops super anti-dumping tariff on solar panels

3 ways sustainable supply chains can build better business in a post-COVID world

Guterres hails historic Convention banning violence and harassment at work

Palestine refugee crisis ‘expanding’; leaving highest number at risk this century across Gaza

Blockchain is facing a backlash. Can it survive?

In wake of ‘collapsed’ agreement, new wave of violence threatens millions in Syria’s Idlib

Reimagining the future of the tax system

Coronavirus (COVID-19): The truth against the myths

Can collective action cure what’s ailing our food systems?

Post-Brexit muddled times: the resignation of UK’s top ambassador and Theresa May’s vague plans

An economist explains how to value the internet

Importance of teaching ethics in Brazilian Medical Schools

Public health: Stronger rules on medical devices

How to build a fairer gig economy in 4 steps

UN health experts warn ‘dramatic resurgence’ of measles continues to threaten the European region

5 ways to get more women working in AI

Financial stability: Commission addresses risks of Libor cessation

Millions of young lives at risk due to humanitarian funding shortfall: UNICEF

Macron’s Presidency: what the young generation’s expectations are

The EU responds to US challenges by fining Apple with €13 billion

Trade/Human Rights: Commission decides to partially withdraw Cambodia’s preferential access to the EU market

EU lawmakers strike milestone deal for corporate tax transparency

How 5G can connect the affordable homes of the future

Taxation: Historic global agreement to ensure fairer taxation of multinational enterprises

An economist explains the pros and cons of globalization

One Day in Beijing

Mobile health: The future of global healthcare

Cum-ex tax fraud scandal: MEPs call for inquiry, justice, and stronger tax authorities

Every bite of burger boosts harmful greenhouse gases: UN Environment Agency

Europe Day: discover the European Union on 9 May 2021

State aid: Commission approves €300 million Austrian scheme to support organisers of events affected by coronavirus outbreak

Building cybersecurity capacity through benchmarking: the Global Cybersecurity Index

Handwashing is saving lives – but for too many people, it remains a luxury

Dual Food Quality: Commission releases study assessing differences in the composition of EU food products

Strawberries and child support; a Thai partnership

Intergenerational, intercultural, interactive – The 2015 edition of JADE’s Generations Club: Transforming Europe into an entrepreneurial society

Refugee crisis update: EU lacks solidarity as migration figures drop

Advocating for the democratization of palliative care through its implementation in the Universal Health Coverage

End racist discrimination against Afro-European people in the EU

3 ways to stop COVID-19 from drying up start-up talent pools

Feeling the heat? This is how to keep cool as temperatures rise

Can indoor farming feed the world?

The digital building blocks of better communities

Vaccination campaigns and global cooperation: challenges to be overcome

FIAT Chrysler: from Geneva Motor show to the World, and back

Radioactive material ‘a magnet for groups with malicious intent’, warns UN nuclear watchdog chief

Monsanto lawsuit ruling a ‘significant recognition’ of victims’ human rights, say UN rights experts

5 ways urban transport could step up a gear for women

European Labour Authority ready to start working in October as decision is taken on new seat

Coronavirus: Commission proposes €4.5 million to support over 5,000 dismissed tourism workers or self-employed in Estonia

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s