What madness we are facing lately, isn’t it?
In less than a month our life has turned upside down, and we don’t even know when it will return to normal.
As they say here in England, this is now our “new normal”, and according to the Prime Minister, it is likely that more changes are yet to come.
In England, one thing is certain, the statistics are incorrect, and there are many more cases of people infected by coronavirus than being reported.
We know this because, in the first place, they are only testing people who are already in hospitals.
Second of all, the recommendation is for patients to call 111 in case of COVID-19 symptoms. However, we know some people that did that, and they said that the person was indeed infected and should isolate, and that was it.
No tests, not going into the statistics, nothing. Therefore, there is no way to know for sure how many cases we really have here.
Here in the UK, people began panicking around two weeks ago.
The supermarkets are with the shelves empty because of the selfishness of some who stockpile, and now those who need to buy food can no longer find much.
Actually, we are at the moment where you buy what you can find, not really able to choose.
Fortunately we got some vegetables and this week I froze them, to ensure that we continue eating healthy. We’ve also got rice, beans and some meat from a Brazilian butcher/grocery store and with that, we have food for about two weeks. After that, we will see what to do…
The coronavirus has already taught me a lesson: never waste food again!
At the initiative of the supermarkets, some of them are leaving the first hour for the elderly and on Sunday, time slots will be reserved for those who work in the health area and such.
Also, supermarkets are limiting the most popular items to only buy 2 or 3 items per person.
The English government went on the contrary to other countries and made a different tactic, leaving everything open and without significant restrictions. Basically, nobody understood this strategy, and in the end, the population started to isolate itself.
Unfortunately, it was only on the 20th of March that schools were closed (except for children of health professionals, police and other services directly involved in fighting the coronavirus).
Additionally, on the 20th of March, the Prime Minister ordered that this would be the last day that cafes, bars and restaurants could be open. However, they can do takeaway services, thus not wasting food.
How the English (and we) will survive without going to the pub is a mystery!
What I thought was cool is that several restaurants, as they were without customers but with a lot of food stored, they started selling boxes with vegetables, fruits and other perishable products.
This is great for those who no longer find these foods in major supermarket chains, as well as for the restaurant, who will be making some money, without wasting these foods.
High street shops are still open, but the government’s recommendation is to stay at home, therefore these places are empty. So why doesn’t the government immediately close down these establishments? Nobody understands.
Several museums and tourist attractions closed by their choice, going against the government’s recommendations.
However, many of these museums provide virtual visits and such. For your entrainment, I will soon post a shortlist of some of them for you.
The London Underground closed several lines, and the flow of buses was reduced, but honestly, I don’t know how the workers of the places that haven’t closed yet, are going to commute.
Some gin and whiskey distilleries started to manufacture hand gel as it is one of the products in short supply and difficult to find anywhere.
The NHS is preparing as it possibly can, including negotiating with hotels, so those will become hospitals if required.
And this is why you should try to understand, the issue is not about: it is just a flu!
Please, understand, it is not just a flu, because COVID-19 spreads much more quickly and affects a lot the respiratory system, especially those who already have a health condition.
The panic is because if multiple people get sick and in need of hospital care all at once, it will overload the health system. There are no sufficient beds in hospitals; no ventilators; not enough Intensive Care Units, in fact, there won’t have enough hospitals. And who wants to be sick, knowing that they will not be able to be treated effectively or perhaps will not even be treated?
Imagine, Italy is already entering the phase of “Sophie’s Choice”.
Sophie’s choice is when you have to choose who is more likely to survive, thus leaving, who has fewer chances, to die. The lack of resources is due to a large number of sick people at the same time. So doctors have to make that tragic and challenging decision.
This is very sad! This is very serious and has not happened since the Second World War.
Here in England, it is already known that hospitals do not have enough capacity and that is why they are contacting several industries to produce more ventilators. Factories such as Rolls-Royce, Ford, Honda, among others are already studying how to build this equipment. It remains to be seen whether it will be on time!
Around 65 thousand doctors and nurses who are retired, were reached by the government, asking them to return to work and help in the period of chaos that is approaching.
It is said that we are a few weeks to the peak of infected people.
Also, there are several measures that the government announces to help workers and businesses that will suffer economically from this “standstill” time. More info here: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
On the 20th of March was announced that the government will pay 80% of employees’ salaries maintained by their employer, covering wages of up to £2.500 per month. This will enable workers to keep their jobs, even if their employer cannot pay them.
The salary package is the latest in a series of government measures aimed at relieving the burden on businesses and their employees. That is only for registered employees.
Every day, at 5 pm, the Prime Minister makes a statement, and as circumstances change around here, I will let you know.
In fact, here in London is where are the majority of coronavirus cases in the country and we are just waiting for the city’s lockdown.
Lockdown is what is already happening in Italy, France, Spain. It is a series of restrictions such as people can only leave the house for an exceptional reason, like going to buy food or medications and only one person from the household at a time. Plus, you have to keep a distance of at least 1 meter from others and entering the supermarket just a few at each time. But each country has its own rules.
Let’s see if this is really going to happen here.
For now, what we know is that here in England we will have to self-isolate and keep social distancing for several weeks and only go out in case of extreme need: pharmacy and supermarket.
With this, several groups are forming to help each other virtually in this time of stress and anxiety.
To keep us active, some are making live videos so people can exercise, do yoga, pilates and many more activities together.
Many professionals and schools are making interactive videos for children and virtual classes so they can continue their education.
There are psychologists, therapists, nutritionists, coaching and several other specialists giving cool tips on social media, helping those who are struggling with this.
I want to make a list sharing some of these channels and media so you can have some ideas on what to do while in isolation.
Who knew that one day we would lose our right to come and go?
Luckily, this will be temporary, and we will learn many things about ourselves and others in the meantime!
This post is also available in: Português