Here we are in Corona Ville
By Dr Biodun Ogungbo, MBBS, FRCS, FRCSEd, MSc
As at today, the world is learning to live with the Coronavirus.
Coronavirus is here and everywhere. Almost all the countries in the world have been affected, some more than others. The United States of America and Brazil top the list in the number of infections and number of deaths. As at today, Johns Hopkins University reports almost eleven million cases and 500, 000 deaths.
In Nigeria, we have officially recorded 29, 000 cases and over 600 deaths. The number of cases are holding steady at over 500 daily and there are daily reports of some prominent deaths. It is devastating the rich and famous as well as the rest of us. Everyone is at risk and now on the firing line.
Coronavirus is now in the community and in the house next door.
This is the reality and now an established fact of life. We are not having travelers from out of town and still having cases. There is also relaxation of the lockdown in many areas and free movement. This in essence means people are transferring the virus locally. So, person to person transmission of infection is easier and prevalent. This is the time for extra vigilance and self-preservation.
Don’t be a covidiot.
The Coronavirus and Covid-19 infection is real and causing a lot of problems worldwide. Unfortunately, some people do not believe it and some even think this is all fake. These are the people we now refer to as Covidiots. They question the science and worry about the impact on their social life personally rather than the lives of the collective. These are the most dangerous people and the ones you need to distance from.
A recent article details how people in a bus suddenly brought out facemasks from their bags, when one of the passengers confessed, that he had been in contact with someone suffering from the Coronavirus infection. So, in truth many people get the message but choose to bury their heads in the sand like an ostrich.
Prevention is vitally important
Prevention of infection with Covid-19 is important and critical. We do not have anything else worth relying upon. The mode of preventing infection is by wearing a face mask when out and about. It is also by frequent hand-washing or use of the hand-sanitizer. Wearing the facemask in your pocket or inside the bag is not effective. Neither is wearing it under your chin!
Wearing a face-shield alone without a facemask is also not enough and offers very little protection.
Above all, social distancing and avoiding crowds is effective. It limits your chances of coming into contact with someone who may have the infection but is not showing any signs. If you decide to go to the market, the church or mosque or the birthday party of your neighbor, you may have already decided you do not care about the virus.
This is of course, your choice. For all those, who feel that the virus is a hoax and go about not protecting themselves, accept you may catch the infection. However, do not then appear in the hospital asking for help.
Doctors and nurses lives matter too.
As at today, over 800 doctors and many more nurses have been infected with the virus in Nigeria and hundreds of thousands worldwide. This is killing doctors, nurses, pharmacists and laboratory scientists. They are getting infected because people are going to the hospital. Understandably. But, if you protect yourself and do not take chances, more doctors lives will be saved.
May I reiterate? Do not be a covidiot!
NB: Doctors for change (DFC) is raising funds to purchase PPE for healthcare workers in Nigeria. Please join us to save lives, as this infection is now here to stay. The Coronavirus is in town and we have to learn to live with it.
Ask me how you can donate to this cause.