Stemming the tide together

  • The Star Says
  • Sunday, 22 Mar 2020

WE’RE five days into the movement control order (MCO) period, with nine more days to go before we can go about our regular routine again.

Of course, the lifting of the MCO is contingent upon all of us following its terms.

For those of us not in essential services, this means staying at home unless we absolutely have to go out for either medical reasons or to restock depleted necessities.

For those of us working in essential services or who absolutely have to leave the house, this means practising social distancing, as well as frequent hand hygiene.

Washing our hands properly and thoroughly with soap and water, or using alcohol-based hand sanitisers, as well as avoiding touching our faces or any open wounds we have, are the best methods we have to prevent infection.

The second wave of Covid-19 cases is still ongoing with 1,183 cases and eight deaths up to March 21, and a trend of one hundred plus new cases being diagnosed everyday.

We need to continue adhering to the MCO in order to avoid a third wave of cases, which Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has likened to a potential tsunami of cases.

If we hit this stage, our healthcare services are potentially likely to be overwhelmed.

We only have to look at Italy now to see what this would be like.

In addition to a staggering number of Covid-19 cases in this potential third wave, don’t forget that Malaysians are still having heart attacks, strokes, diabetic complications, kidney failure and all the other medical problems that occur in normal times.

With our healthcare resources geared towards managing the Covid-19 pandemic, including limited intensive care unit beds, these patients might not be able to access the treatment that they need.

And if you are currently chafing under the MCO, do note that a total lockdown is likely be implemented at this stage as well.

Our economy, already suffering now, will deteriorate even further, possibly triggering a recession if we are required to stay in lockdown for an extended period of time.

Our healthcare professionals are definitely our heroes, especially in times like this when they have to perform their duties under the threat of being infected themselves.

And let’s not forget the other frontliners who are keeping essential services up and running for the rest of us.

We need to give them the support that they need by strictly staying at home and practising social distancing, so that the number of new Covid-19 cases can be controlled to a manageable level.

Fighting an unseen enemy like the coronavirus might seem difficult, but if we all do our part, we will be able to beat this pandemic with as few deaths as possible.

Let’s do this together, Malaysians!

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