Kohima, December 7: The Nagaland Health and Family Welfare Department has warned that the onset of winter and festive season marking Christmas and New Year celebrations will be the most critical stage for the State in the fight against COVID-19.
Speaking during virtual session organised by Covid-19 Academy Nagaland on the topic ‘Basic sciences and stigma of Covid-19’ on Monday, HFW Public Health Specialist, Dr. Longri Kichu said during the festive season people want to go to their villages and move around visiting friends and relatives, but this Christmas has to be different owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 Academy-Nagaland is a Joint initiative of Sphere India in collaboration with NSDMA, Home Department, with support from WHO, UNICEF, WFP and HCL Foundation.
Citing the examples of surge in COVID-19 cases in the national capital following the Durga Puja and Diwali celebrations, Dr Kichu said people in Nagaland will have to forego major Christmas celebration and avoid big gatherings and traveling to villages in order to contain the spread of SARS-COV-2 (coronavirus).
Remarking that people do not follow SOPs in social gatherings including funerals and weddings, he expressed fear that the COVID-19 situation would be worst in the State if people don’t avoid Christmas gatherings.
“During winter, people tend to gather in a close setting or stay home with windows, ventilations and doors closed, posing an increased risk of getting infection.
Closed spaces are ideal places for spread of the coronavirus. In such conditions, virus remains for longer period of time,” he remarked.
Everybody wants to travel to the villages and hometowns during Christmas, but for this Christmas, people should try to restrict travels unless very necessary, he said.
In this, Dr Kichu informed that the department would soon be issuing Festive Season Advisory.
This will be only one Christmas which people have to forego and hopefully the celebrations can be bigger next year after things get better, he expressed hope.
Dr Kichu insisted on following the 3Ws – wear mask, wash hands and watch distance and avoid 3Cs – crowded places, close-contact settings and confined or enclosed spaces. (Page News Service)