Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Safety first

With Unlock-4.0 our people appears to have forgotten that the corona virus is still virulent in the State. People are seen not even following simple guidelines like wearing masks, or maintaining social distancing in public places. Seeing the situation, the State Health & Family Welfare Department has also cautioned the people from misconstruing the relaxation as an improvement of the COVID-19 pandemic situation. “We have been observing that people feel the pandemic is over. As and when one goes around in the town, it is quite evident that social distancing is almost a forgotten thing while people do not wear face masks properly,” Principal Director of Health & Family Welfare, Dr Vizolie Z. Suokhrie has said recently. “Even though the restrictions have been lifted, we have to be more careful and more proactive with the preventive measures. One thing everyone should remember is that taking care and taking a new normal life is going to be of paramount importance for everyone. If you don’t want to get infected, behave responsibly,” he had cautioned. Agreed, COVID-19 has a good recovery rate in the State. However, it does not mean that we have to be complacent about its virulence, complications and mortality. It would be unfair on our part if we think that it doesn’t matter a big deal if we contract this virus. Maybe most of the infected won’t get symptomatic but they are turning potential spreaders and are responsible for the death of someone somewhere whom they don’t even know. Doctors opine that COVID-19 can cause lasting damage to the lungs and those who recover may be at risk for long-term health issues. In fact, recent studies suggest that younger people are at higher risk of long term complications of Covid-19 disease called “Post-COVID Fibrosis of Lung”. Being susceptible to certain other respiratory infectious diseases; predisposing to any malignancy; the need for a lung transplant – experts state that continuing complications of recovered patients are still unclear. We know that coronavirus is too tiny. But it’s too dangerous to be misjudged. The virus has come up as a mirror to mankind. It’s preposterous, as of now, to think of “fighting it”. We instead need the vision to comprehend the penalty from this miniature virus and that would perhaps save mankind from getting devastated by it. COVID-19 is not just a pandemic; it is turning out as a history-altering affair. It has given rise to new world order. And it is imperative for us to understand and adapt ourselves to post-COVID life. With marriage season in the State approaching, there is a need for solemnizing marriages with austerity. Small gatherings and strict social distancing need to be observed. Additionally, the least possible time should be spent at social gatherings. Mask should now be an obligatory part of our dress code when we venture outside the home. Public transport should be used as per SOPs. Indeed there is a dire need to be painstaking towards ourselves and our society. If we aren’t, we are then heading for bigger catastrophe. If COVID-19 cases continue to scale with a rapid upward trend, hundreds getting infected in a day, people here should be ready for worst times to come. Besides, we usually witness swell in respiratory diseases during autumn and winter seasons. As Dr Vizolie Suokhrie had cautioned, “Coronavirus much against our wish has already come to Nagaland and it is going to stay with us for some time. We don’t know how long it will continue but if we look at the season, a type of seasonal flu is coming and this is the time we have to really practice the prescribed norms.” So in the coming months, overlapping of symptoms due to COVID-19 infection and other non-COVID respiratory infections would be another challenge for healthcare workers. Today it is a fact that our people feel alienated. They are annoyed with the system for reasons political and beyond. This irrefutable sentiment perhaps adds to their propensity of going against the administration by defying the COVID-19 preventive guidelines. Of course, it has been observed that COVID-19 virus has been used as a political tool in many conflict zones around the globe, but we need to take COVID-19 as a pandemic and follow the advisories framed and implemented globally, falling in line with WHO recommendations. These preventive policies are aimed for our safety and not designed for our suffering.