While restrictions on movements and lockdowns in most parts of the country have been eased, health experts have stressed that the threat of coronavirus has increased and people need to take care of themselves more than ever before.
Now, greater responsibility lies with the people to maintain precautions and carry out any outdoor activities with the utmost vigilance and precautions, the experts said. It is possible that the combination of ease of travel restrictions and reopening of offices, public places like malls and cafes can contribute to the increased risk of Covid-19.
According to Dr Jyoti Mutta, Senior Consultant, Microbiology at Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute in New Delhi, people need to understand that the ‘Unlock’ was ordered due to the country’s economic reasons.
“Now it should be individuals’ responsibility to follow the rules and guidelines on their own but it is unfortunate to see people not wearing masks and ignoring social distancing,” Mutta told IANS. “Coming back to daily routine life is the need of the hour but the risk is still not over. We have even witnessed a low rate of infections in some areas as well, and that is due to following precautionary measures with discipline,” she added.
Mutta also said that now in Unlock, wearing masks, maintaining social distance, practising hand hygiene are crucial measures to control the spread of the infection.
Dr Navneet Sood, a Pulmonology Consultant at Dharamshila Narayana Superspeciality Hospital in New Delhi, told IANS: “It is disappointing to see that a section of society is not following norms. It doesn’t mean that the risk is over and we can move in public places freely. It is understood that being in lockdown for such a long time affected people in many senses, financially, mentally, emotionally, but the risk is still out there, so we need to control unnecessary movements and take every possible precautionary measure.”
According to Dr Nikhil Modi, Senior Consultant, Respiratory, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals in New Delhi, though people may understandably find it challenging, the best way to protect yourself and others is to stay home. The doctor said that people need to prioritise safety and precautions over our requirement of socialising.
Speaking on the new way of socialising, Modi told IANS: “If you are socialising with other people outside of your household, it’s best to do it outside in open air, where there is more airflow and room for respiratory droplets to disperse.
“While outside, people should still maintain at least six feet of physical distance from others and wear a mask. As healthcare experts our recommendation would be against stepping out of the house until absolutely necessary, that is in case of a medical emergency or an avoidable circumstance,” Modi concluded.