Express & Star comment: Time to take responsibility over coronavirus
For a while, Coronavirus – Covid-19 – was something that happened to other people many miles away. Now that’s changed.
The number of cases in the UK is increasing.
The threats to livelihoods and lives is growing. And though it’s sensible to keep a sense of perspective, we must be ready to change our behaviour in the near future.
Clearly the problem is escalating and the Government is taking a much stronger stance on the issue. We are now told the widespread transmission of the virus is likely which could have far-reaching implications for all aspects of our society.
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There is clearly a balancing act to be struck for the Government; mass hysteria will cause more problems, while inaction could be disastrous. It must therefore be seen to be acting sensibly and calmly.
In the meantime, we can all do our bit by adhering to the advice on personal hygiene, washing our hands thoroughly being perhaps the most important. We must accept some degree of personal responsibility, making sure that we are honest with ourselves and others if we feel unwell.
We must also be flexible if we have to work from home, avoid public gatherings or take other measures that might cause mild inconvenience. Similarly, we must remember to dial 111, rather than immediately visit a doctor’s surgery.
Our beleaguered NHS will struggle to cope in the face of such a threat and we might also remember that with spring not yet upon us, we remain in the season where common colds, more serious flus and other viruses abound. We cannot be too careful, we must not take any risks.
Though the mortality rate from Covid-19 is mercifully low, it remains a potent threat to the elderly and those who are already sick.
This is not the first time that we have faced such threats and we must be responsible and sensible about our own actions.
The Government has accepted that it will present a significant challenge for our country. It is up to each of us to do what we can to reduce risk and minimise transmission.