Taking Covid-19 threats easy can be devastating

The threat of Covid-19 is always present. This has been the stand of this newspaper since the first day the Covid-19 virus case in the country.

Health experts say that Covid-19 is not going to go away easily. Face masks and the many health protocols, why really not, could become apart of our daily lives henceforth.

The warning, though, doesn’t seem to be enough. How we let the virus in taught us a lesson. Lockdown happened overnight and we have had to confront the many challenges.

The worse is coming, sooner than later, the way people are taking things—lightly. Walk around the towns and you will see many a young individual without face mask. Ask them why they are not wearing face masks and they will tell you that the face masks are suffocating.

Seen from their point of view, it is understandable. Getting used to face masks will take time. The main problem is that the moment we think we can get out of lockdown everything can be forgotten, warts and all!

This is the danger facing the nation today.

There are already rumours that even health professionals and quite a number of frontliners have tested Covid-19 positive. In the coming days, we will hear more such stories. The worse is that we will never know who got tested positive and how many are at the risk.

The very definition of “sensitivity” ought to be questioned. How much good can be achieved by hiding the name and person who the virus has got it, is, sometimes frustratingly constricting. The logic is that if the media can bring the name of the person who has contracted the disease, tracing can be by much more efficient.

As sensitivity is with Bhutan and Bhutanese, though, this can be difficult and self-defeating.

Thimphu is the biggest city in the country. Community transmission can be dangerous. Yet one can see young people without face masks loitering around the towns. There are police and De-Suups around, thank goodness, but everyone seems to be in a relaxed mood because lockdown has been eased.

But the positive cases are shooting up from the south of the country. Our only defence is to secure our people and the communities from local transmission that could be devastating. As we speak, this is the real danger.

Are we taking Covid-19 threats very lightly? Very likely, yes. And this can be very expensive for the nation.

There is the need to tighten the rules and inspections. Frontliners have more to do now than ever before and we have to support them. Give them not just the mandate but also power. This is where we have come to.

We seem to stick to some truly needless dos and don’ts. We can do a lot better as a nation. We need to be more sensible and proactive.

How are we thinking to do it?

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