Covid 19: Although the pandemic is over, people are yet to forget the fears associated with testing and quarantines.
This was a long wait. Covid 19 pandemic which created mayhem for almost 3 years and killed more than 7 million people across the world is no more a “global emergency”. While the declaration by the World Health Organisation (WHO) brings much-awaited relief, Covid continues to kill people although not at a mass scale which the world witnessed during 2020-2021. Despite the availability of vaccines, new variants have emerged, which is more reason to remain vigilant. Another reason for not taking it lightly is that there is no particular covid-medication available in the market, other than the vaccine.
Why it is important, not to be complacent about coronavirus?
Dr Nitika Kaura, MBBS, who works in the research wing of a leading pharmaceutical company as a Drug Safety Physician says one can still contact against coronavirus if special precautions are not taken. She believes it is very important to wash hands at regular intervals and carry a hand sanitiser at all times. “It is very important to maintain distance while in public as one cannot say when someone is carrying the virus. Although a large number of COVID-19 cases are not being reported, it does not mean the virus has seized to exist”, she said.
When asked how should one behave if someone develops indicative symptoms, Dr Kaura said the first thing to do is to get tested. “People often avoid getting tested, mostly out of fear of being isolated, but this is not the correct behaviour. When cases are not detected, they go unreported and thus the virus spreads and multiplies. If someone develops symptoms of coronavirus, they must get it tested at the earliest”, she further added.
Although the pandemic is over, people are yet to forget the fears associated with testing and quarantines. It is both good and bad since people are back into their normal life routines, however, getting too complacent is not something that experts advise.
Staying safe from COVID-19 requires a combination of preventative measures, including getting vaccinated, wearing masks, practising social distancing, regularly disinfecting surfaces, and seeking medical attention when necessary.
Coronavirus develops in various stages
According to an article published in Scientific Reports journal in January 2023, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it a great deal of uncertainty and confusion, particularly when it comes to understanding the different stages of the disease:
The first stage is an asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic infection, where a person has tested positive for the virus but is showing no symptoms. It’s important to note that even in the absence of symptoms, these individuals are still contagious and can transmit the virus to others.
The second stage is a mild illness, where a person experiences mild symptoms such as fever, cough, altered taste, malaise, headache, or muscle aches. However, there are no breathing difficulties or radiologically detectable changes.
The third stage is moderate disease, where a person’s blood oxygen saturation levels are equal to or greater than 94%, and there is evidence of pneumonia, either clinically or radiological.
The fourth stage is a severe disease, where a person’s blood oxygen saturation levels are less than 94%.
The final stage is a critical illness, where a person experiences respiratory failure, septic shock, and/or failure of one or more organs.
It’s important to note that COVID-19 is primarily spread through direct contact with infected individuals, particularly through coughing. To limit the spread of the virus, it’s crucial to take precautions such as maintaining a distance of at least 1.5 meters, practising good hygiene by regularly washing and disinfecting hands, and wearing masks and gloves when necessary.