Weeks of isolation amid a massive global crisis, tends to sharpen one’s hypocrisy antenna.
A fortnight ago, after experiencing flu symptoms, I went to see a doctor and was given a Coronavirus Test.
From that moment, I started to realise that extreme measures – like those imposed in Italy – are essential
The doctor told me to take antibiotics which, of course, meant visiting a pharmacist. The pharmacy was in a shopping centre and I also needed to stock up on tissues and hand wash.
So, before I even started isolation, I had possibly passed on what proved not to be Coronavirus, but still a very debilitating flu. And, I had possibly exposed myself to worse while already in a weakened condition.
Over the next two weeks, while awaiting test results and battling the flu, it became even clearer to me that the only way to stop the spiders web spread of Coronavirus was to minimise human movement and contact by tough regulation.
For a start, sections of communities will not seriously isolate themselves from an illness they see as threatening only old people.
Time and time again, I have heard of Milennials lightly dismissing an international pandemic, with no cure, that threatens to leave them a shattered global economy weighed down with many decades of debt.
Secondly, because these intellectual giants, with their precious social media, have a mortgage on wisdom, they have been defying many of the porous travel bans and other distancing measures. Who hasn’t heard of students – many of them Chinese – getting around travel bans by allegedly ‘self-isolating’ in another country before returning to places like Australia.
The only way these people will be prevented from spreading this is to freeze borders and prevent mixing
The whole globalisation credo – with weak border controls in Europe, combined with easy international travel – has created ripe ground for rapid escalation of this crisis – and other viruses than may follow.
It quickly became obvious to me that – despite the rather dubious performance of the so-called World Health Organisation – the Coronavirus needs a drastic response.
Only when the whole community is affected will it be tackled effectively.
It’s time to close borders to all but returning nationals – and to quarantine – not self-quarantine – everyone who does arrive in your country. It’s also time to:
- Close all schools, universities and child-care centres until further notice.
- Close all shops except food stores, petrol outlets, banks and pharmacies until further notice.
- Stop all public transport.
- Ban all public gatherings, including voting but excluding funerals, where attendances should be limited.
- Close all restaurants, coffee shops, cinemas, attractions, hotels, clubs, sporting facilities etc
- Establish an emergency government, made up of key central figures and state/regional leaders.
- Suspend parliamentary sittings and gatherings of politicians.
- Effectively close public offices – with key staff working from home primarily on caronavirus response measures.
- Disinfect money as it is tendered.
- Close parks and playgrounds.
- Introducing a triage system for virus testing in emergency clinics
- Implementing on-call lung scanning in the home.
These type of measures, if not necessary now, may be required eventually anyway. Better to move now!
I hope that I’m wrong, but – at the moment anyway – I think people of all ages need to be involved to seriously handle this pandemic. We are all in this together – and there is no other issue if we are to revive the markets.