Editorial

CASUAL COVID-19 APPROACH

THE casual approach by some members of the public to adhere to the health guidelines aimed at stemming the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19) still leaves much to be desired.
With the number of positive cases hitting 74 and three deaths so far, there is need for Zambians to become more responsible by religiously observing the health guidelines and Presidential directives.
The nation can’t afford a laid-back approach with the number of positive cases surging.
Of great concern is the fact that there are still some people in some parts of the country who shockingly claim that they were not aware of the Covid-19 outbreak.
If this be the case, we urge the Ministry of Health and other stakeholders to escalate ongoing sensitisation programmes on the pandemic.
We agree with Vice President Inonge Wina that awareness messages on Covid-19 outbreak and prevention should be rolled out in all communities across the country in local languages so that no one was left out.
There should be no excuses because Covid-19 is a serious threat to which people should take seriously.
While the authorities have done a praiseworthy job in sensitising the people, there is need to intensify the sensitisation programmes to ensure all corners of the country were enlightened about the disease.
The more people are equipped with knowledge about the dangers of the disease and how to prevent it, the better and the easier it will be for people to obey the stipulated regulations.
Admittedly, there is an improvement in observance levels of the guidelines generally such as masking up, sanitising, social distancing and avoiding handshakes.
However, it is disappointing that many citizens in some areas still have a casual approach to adhering to the health measures but this should not be the case.
It is in this light that we fully agree with Bwana Mkubwa constituency Member of Parliament Jonas Chanda’s timely advice on the need for Zambians to be responsible by adhering to the recommended preventive measures.
Dr Chanda warned that it was better for people to adhere to the measures to prevent an explosion in infections as this would overwhelm and collapse the already constrained health institutions.
The lawmaker is absolutely right!
More infections will collapse the health institutions and the country may not have the capacity to handle an explosive infection rate as has happened in developed countries that are overwhelmed by a high number of positive cases and deaths.
As Dr Chanda observes, this can be avoided by observing the stipulated control measures such as mandatory wearing of masks and refraining from mass gatherings and unnecessary travels to hotspots such as Lusaka and Kafue.
Indeed, the disease should not be allowed to spread to unmanageable levels and this could spell disaster especially in high density areas where people live in small houses or rooms built on tiny plots that are close to each other.
This, sadly, would be a conducive environment for person-to-person transmission of the virus. It is worrisome but that’s why it is important for people to strictly observe the guidelines or risk perishing.
Shun the laid-back approach and adhere to the guidelines!

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