Catherine Onyemize, Maryland, U.S.A
I see COVID-19, the sudden whirlwind that stormed our world as a plague. Sadly, the world can never be the same. Unfortunately, many leaders have turned this to politics: making up numbers of victims, survivors and deaths. So life-threatening is this plague that the mere sound of its name or a slight symptom in the body can mentally put one to death by itself.
Activities are in full lockdown: no church gatherings, no schools and no social interactions. To avoid further spread, the need to maintain social distance by keeping 6 feet apart between yourself and anyone else, staying home as much as possible, avoiding groups, wearing the complete PPE (personal protective equipment), regular washing and sanitizing of hands have become the “New-Normal”. These have actually yielded positive results and very soon we can all take our foot off the brake, breathe again and live again. Hopefully.
Being made to forcefully stay home thereby has left many traumatized and demoralized. For the most part, Medical Frontliners have been made to put their lives at risk, some paying the ultimate price with their lives.
USA as a case study: looking at the entire states in the US, 25% of New York is plagued with the virus. It also has the highest death rate. The public health authorities have been focusing on the most vulnerable communities with some good and bad news.
As a matter of fact, the United States has recorded a huge number of deaths of medical practitioners. This has led to a recall of retired or even hitherto laid-off staff to get back to work in other to help curb the spread of the virus.
The leaders should put-in plans to provide economic relief to everyone. And small businesses that are struggling financially while maintaining strict adherence to health and safety procedures need robust support. Is “Free testing” of all residents and staff of the medical facilities particularly the front liners impossible?
Looking forward, I hope this virus disappears just as it came so the entire world can be resuscitated and back to normal. I am hoping there will be a scientific breakthrough that gets the right vaccine for proper treatment.
After the pandemic, the global economy will live with FEAR. However, I believe our world will return stronger, but we all need to work together.
In my opinion, activities will not function at a 100% for a long time to come. We will likely see resurgence in COVID-19 in certain areas/sectors of the US most likely until a vaccine or medicine advances allow for tools to adequately address the health crisis.
In the life of kids/students, the world of education is grappling with the fear of returning to the traditional classroom setting or moving to a new path focused on student well-being and reducing the deep inequalities of global learning.
For small businesses and public gatherings such as churches: recovery will obviously be a challenge for both large and small. This rebound won’t happen overnight.
The workforce will create jobs for those who lost their jobs to COVID-19 for steady income. As an opportunity, they will likely find stronger staff with experience. The pandemic gave rise to curbside services, this will be a staple in the labor market to prevent too many people at the same time in the stores, malls, plants etc. In this way, more jobs will be created, or rather newer job variations that never existed or were minimal before the pandemic will come into being.
Yet, we will have to live with the gnawing trepidation around predictions around a second and third waves, and even a return of the virus in 10 years (2030). Hence, the need to be guarded and guided at every given time. Right now, we just want to breathe and live again.