19 May 2022

Opinion from Adrian Leopard & Co

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Covid is turning our world upsidedown. Do we know where we are
Adrian Leopard 291

Covid is turning our world upsidedown. Do we know where we are

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Just because we may do it does not mean that it is going to be safe. Full risk assessment of getting gack together is essential

There are now so many different rules and regulations in relation to coronavirus and differing levels of information that people are beginning to lose track, that is if they have not already done so.

When the government first announced a lockdown over a year ago, it was simple. Go home and stay there. Only go out in a minimum selection of circumstances. No mixing; all non-essential activity stopped. It was actually quite straightforward. And what happened, by and large the public did as they were asked and the lockdown had a positive result. The unfortunate aspect, with the benefit of hindsight was that it was probably not long enough and the system had holes in it – like people continuing to arrive in the country from abroad when closing the borders would have made more sense.

Now a year or so later, we have a government determined to bring an end to lockdown and other restrictions. Unfortunately just because restrictions look like being lifted, there is a huge body of opinion, both professional and public, which takes the view that it is all too much and too soon and the real worry is that it will send the wrong signals to the public.

It is all very fine saying that people in certain areas “should be more careful” about who they mix with and so forth but people are just human. It is difficult enough sometimes to remember that you have to keep clear and the way many people see it is that if they are now permitted to do something, then they think that it also means that it is okay to do it when perhaps it is not.

One looks at the arguments being made over summer holidays. Holiday companies and airlines just cannot understand why the government has made it so difficult to come and go. Well how are they missing the picture? New cases are up 61% on the past seven days and deaths up 67% when we thought we had got them under control.

Where it is particularly worrying is in relation to simple local activities where people get together, organisations like rotary, masonry, women’s institute, dining clubs etc etc. These are personal organisations where people “get together”. They mix with their friends; they do what they have always done and in essence are potential hot beds for the transmission of the disease because of that proximity. By allowing them all to go back, there is an enhanced risk of further disease transmission, especially with new variants arising from time to time which may not be so well opposed by vaccinations.

The safest way of staying safe is to stay at home and meet no one. That is not a very practicable solution on a long term basis; indeed it is just as likely to bring about mental issues which have their own problems. So next best is to follow the medical advice to remain as safe as possible – have the vaccinations. That way you stand the best chance, not a full 100% chance, of protecting yourself from disease and reducing the possibility of transmitting it to others.

If you belong to one of these local organisations, you need to think very carefully about what you are going to do because you may find that you are mixing with people who have not been vaccinated and who are carriers. The anti-vaxxers are extremely dangerous. Because they do not feel ill, they think they are not carriers but without a test they do not actually know.

We cannot claim that herd immunity has set in yet because of the rising number of new cases. We know we are going to have to live with covid-19 as an endemic disease but it is still going to take time for the position to reach that new classification and the risk is that there will be many people out there thinking they are safe when they are not.

Adrian Leopard 09-06-21

Photo Pascal Bernadon

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