Social effects of Covid-19


MY husband who works in Melaka came home a few weeks ago not knowing he was infected with Covid-19. He became very ill after he returned to Melaka, so he got tested for Covid-19 and was found to be positive.

Of course our family in Petaling Jaya, where we live, immediately went for screening and one of my children tested positive.

Our experience with Covid-19 has made me come to the conclusion that you will see the best and worst of people around you when you and/or any of your family members test positive for the coronavirus.

In our case, some were genuinely concerned and kept reaching out with kind words or offers to help with getting the groceries for us while my family was in quarantine.

Some residents were annoyed (we live in a condo) because they have elderly parents who might come to visit and they could be exposed to the virus. Well, I have an elderly mother, too, so I am also very careful.

Then there were those who hoped we would refrain from visiting them for as long as possible after the quarantine period. Are people even aware that we are in the midst of a pandemic and nobody ever asks to be infected?

And then there were those who were simply thoughtless and unkind in the way they interacted with a recovered patient.

My husband, whose quarantine period ended yesterday, has been told not to be in contact with anyone, touch anything or even go back to the workplace. He was sent back to Melaka as that was where he was picked up before being taken to the quarantine centre.

He is not allowed in his workplace although he has informed the company’s human resource personnel about the guideline on returning employees, which he got from the Frequently Asked Questions notice at the quarantine centre.

“Q7: What if my company/employer requests for repeat Covid-19 swab?

“As per national and international (WHO) recommendations, a repeat swab is not necessary for patients who have recovered from Covid-19 within the first three months of recovery. In some cases, a repeat swab may remain positive BUT you are no longer infectious after the quarantine period (first three months after infection).”

But the response he got was, “Itu kertas cakap (that is only on paper).”

Perhaps this human resources person and the management in general should share their very expert opinion with the World Health Organisation!

This action is highly discriminatory, hence I hope the ministry concerned will look into this so that no employee of any company who are Covid-19 survivors are discriminated against.

To those who are so smug because Covid-19 has not affected them, stop being unkind. God forbid, but you might be next! If you do not want to be treated with thoughtlessness and unkindness, then don’t treat others that way. This virus does not discriminate, and neither should you!

IVY GEORGE

Petaling Jaya

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