Observing COVID-19 protocols while waiting for vaccines…in Africa’s interest

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RECENTLY, global COVID-19 pandemic challenges took a further stretch with different variants spreading across many countries. 

  UNITED Nations, through one of its subsidiaries, World Health Organisation (WHO) has expressed deep concerns over the emergence of the coronavirus variants and  raised issues of  availability of vaccines to tackle them.

  RESERVATIONS over inability of  some of the newly developed vaccines to give 100 per cent protection to victims of the variants are already exposing  cracks in the effectiveness of  the new anti- coronavirus inventions. Traces of fear factor are already pushing some countries to re-evaluate their vaccine policies while some have moved ahead in suspending adoption of Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine  for patients’ clinical treatment.

  SOUTH Africa took the hard stance of temporarily suspending Astrazeneca vaccine after her scientists found that it provided a low level of protection against mild to moderate illnesses caused by 501Y.V2 coronavirus variant identified first in the country.

  TO THIS end, WHO Director, Tendros Ghebreyesus identified resort to simple but proven public health measures as pivotal in finding a way out. According to him, “the results are reminder that we need to do everything possible to reduce circulation of the virus with proven public health measures.”

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  ACCORDING to South African health authourity, Professor Abdool Karim, the country may be embarking on a threshold of monitoring 100,000 people’s hospitalisation rate, placing them on Astrazeneca which they said had only 28 per cent efficiency on variant 501Y.V2 while still moving ahead with deploying Johnson and Johnson, Sportnik V and Pfizer/BioNTechs  vaccines.

  APPARENTLY, focus may have to shift to improving on existing strategy in the fight against the pandemic. Whether confidence is going high on available COVID-19 vaccines or not, it is imperative that the primordial measures such as the COVID-19 protocols be strengthened.

  AMONG possible approaches to be adopted, odds favour strong commitment to reducing the spread of the virus through strict application of the common safety protocols. Regular hand washing with soap and running water and use of sanitiser remain crucial. Social distancing as well as proper use of facemasks are equally tipped even when they appear uncomfortable..

  PERHAPS, Africa and the rest of the developing world should embrace the culture of religiously observing the protocols while it seems that their hope for hullages of vaccines will take a long while. This is more compelling given that the distributions of the available vaccines cannot be in their favour to get until richer  countries have hardly enough, more so, when production is still at limited level.

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  THE cheapest and most credible available option remains good healthy life regime driven by COVID-19 protocols observance with good diet habit.

  ANAMBRA State’s share of COVID-19 experiences may not be entirely different from the rest of her counterparts; thus the battles and struggles to navigate through the challenging times with minimal damage.

  WITH the number of cases standing currently at  1615 and 19 deaths since her first index case in March, 2020, the state is obviously performing well in management of the global health crisis.

  HOWEVER, the danger of looking back to admire mileage covered and losing focus on the next task to accomplish lurks. This has kept the state alert and on  its toes as she remains  wide awake in surveillance.

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  THIS MAKES it very important to discourage  carefree citizens whose nonchalance may put others in harm’s way.  Hence the renewed  vigour in enforcing compliance with established COVID-19 protocols in the state by all is commendable.

  A VERY popular spare parts market in the state got into the wrong side of the law; disregarding all calls for observance of COVID-19 protocols for undisclosed reasons.

THE STATE government did not hesitate to shut it down.

  WHILE National Light commends governments efforts so far in curtailing the spread of the pandemic, it is important to remind  citizens and communities  that no matter the excuses for not observing the protocols, the only way in everyone’s interest is to observe them .

  QUITE as government is doing its utmost because it is expected to ensure general compliance with the guidelines for the entire well being of citizens, people should avoid waiting to be forced to comply. We therefore urge all members of society to heed and observe COVID-19 protocols, especially wearing of facemask in public places.

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