“Circuit Breaker” : Are we braking COVID-19 or breaking under it? Why the number of COVID-19 infections are spiking so rapidly even when we are already in a “Circuit Breaker”?
Most of us would have noticed that during this period of “Circuit Breaker”, there are sudden, alarming spikes in the number of COVID-19 cases. Amidst this rising statistic, there are also fake amplified stats of COVID-19 cases from private WhatsApp and other message groups. One might question : is the “Circuit Breaker” working? Or is it breaking? Why are the numbers of COVID-19 infections still spiking so rapidly even when we are already in a “Circuit Breaker”?
Reason One : “Circuit Breaker” is not a cure for COVID-19.
As researchers work tirelessly on finding more treatments and vaccines for Covid 19 (which might take months), “Circuit Breaker” is the ONLY intervention available to help individuals stay healthy, to break the chain of transmission, and also to allow more vulnerable populations (or COVID-19 identified clusters) a fighting chance of surviving this pandemic.
Reason Two : It takes time for the “Circuit Breaker” to contain COVID-19.
Research has shown us that while COVID-19 virus spreads easily and quickly (via close contact) from one person to another, the incubation period of this virus varies from person to person, with some showing symptoms within 3 days and others as long as 3 weeks. Some research also shows a majority of infections are mild or even asymptomatic. Thus it’s very possible that someone who has already been infected with COVID-19 may be carrying and transmitting this virus to others unknowingly until the virus becomes full blown.
Remember this : You are not just isolating yourselves from COVID-19, you are also assisting those in the identified cluster with a better fighting chance to survive this pandemic.
One of our earliest COVID-19 identified clusters is The Life Church and Missions (of Singapore), which can be traced from the initially identified case of Singapore’s COVID-19 Case 8th and Case 9th and to Case 90th (belonging to a sub-cluster of this cluster and the first fatality of COVID-19 in Singapore). From all these official records, it is easy to understand that the incubation period of this virus varies from people to people (source).
Reason Three : Individuals and groups not taking this “Circuit Breaker” seriously enough.
Fools – period.
True and false. While certainly there are some “covidiots” out there still having a ball of their time, there are also people out there who are really in need of help and ought to be spared from any tongue lashings. We have seen cases of elderly people still loitering outside alone during this “Circuit Breaker” period, some of these stayed alone and they felt safer to be out there in the open then to stay alone at home. There are people out there with depression and anxiety, these people need help and what we can do is not to publicly shame them and call them names.
We might not be able to comprehend what these people are going through and why they are out there loitering about, but without understanding their actual plight, it’s not kind for us to go labeling them as such and posting them virally to friends.
It’s important to study the statistics from other countries which have also issued different degrees of social distancing measures. These countries are also experiencing irregular spikes in their numbers of infection. These statistics should never be taken in a “matter-of-fact” manner, but more as an understanding that most of countries and people are yet to be readied for such a pandemic.
We should be concerned that the number of COVID-19 patients are spiking. At the same time, we should also understand that although as a country, we have gone through other crisis together before and pulled out of it mostly intact and well, COVID-19 is a pandemic no one is prepared for and everyone is learning as much and trying to deal with it as much as well. During this period of spiking, it’s not a time to question whether the “Circuit Breaker” is working, it’s not a time to lose our faith in the system due to the spiking, it’s not the time to blame or shame others, but it’s a time to show again how as a united nation, we can stand together as one in one of the hardest times.
Written by : Mike Koh
Edited by : Huang Yushan / Ling Weiming
Published on : 15/04/2020
Image : Source / Shutterstock