COVID-19: Where Do We Go From Here?
The deadly pandemic disease, COVID-19 (SARS-C0V2-VIRUS) arrived on the scene in December 2019. In January 2020, it was declared a Public Health Emergency with the death of over one million Americans and globally the death toll was over 3 million people according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This devastating disease left an unfathomable imprint on the lives of everyone. Many lives were lost in our close inner circles due to COVID-19. It had the United States as well as other countries in extreme panic due to the lack of knowledge of the disease. Unfortunately, for the United States no pandemic plan was in place. The world we knew prior to COVID-19 would never be the same. Moving forward, to continually control COVID-19, the people along with the WHO must glance back in retrospect to meet the present and future challenges we will be confronted with in the emergence of this new world. Where do we go from here with COVID-19?
In retrospect, we all can agree “our” world was totally overwhelmed by COVID-19 and we all lived in a constant state of fear. Our homes became prisons with most of the public facilities closed such as schools, restaurants and doctor’s offices. The government issued a mandate for face mask to be worn when venturing outside the home. Some of the people accepted the necessity of wearing the mask, while others were offended and adamant about not adhering to the mandate. It was a chilling reality when the official calculation of 350,830 deaths were reported by the CDC the first year of the pandemic. Hope arrived in late December 2020; vaccines became available and were issued to prioritized citizens.
The world moved into 2023 cautiously, but as the year progressed, the majority of the population reverted back into the old “business as usual “mode.
COVID-19 has not gone away, but continues to reoccur in multiple variants. The new variants are causing less sickness, less hospital admissions, and a decline in deaths from the disease. But, if undetected it can be perilous and highly contagious. In retrospect a review of COVID-19 devastating effects were highlighted. So we must ask ourselves individually these two questions? Where do we go from here with COVID-19? What will be our responsibilities for safeguarding our lives and the lives of our families?
It is to be reiterated that COVID-19 mostly causes respiratory symptoms that can feel much like the flu or pneumonia and may attack more than your lungs and respiratory system. People should seek emergency medical attention for difficulty breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion, excessive drowsiness, pale, gray, or blue colored lips. If someone is showing any of these signs call 911.
Below are some pointers that should be reviewed and executed to avoid contracting COVID-19 as well as other loathsome communicable diseases.
· Strict hand washing
· Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth
· Wear a N95 facemask in crowded places
· Stay up to date with COVID-19 and flu vaccines
· Get tested as needed
· Stay home if you suspect or there is confirmed COVID-19
· Seek treatment if you have COVID-19 and are at risk of getting sick
· Avoid contact with people suspected of having confirmed COVID-19
· Social distancing at least 6 feet
As the pandemic enters its fourth year, it remains important for people stay updated about COVID-19 and it emerging variants. Self-discipline may be an antidote that saves in all health related matters. We as people must realize how vulnerable and susceptible we are to the smallest of germs and do all that we can to stay safe. People have gained a lot of knowledge and understanding of COVID-19 for the past three years. A disciplined behavior in following the guidelines is imperative to stay on top of reoccurring mortalities. Now is a great time to start diligently practicing the prevention measures to protect ourselves and others.