Take heed of Covid-19 measures

Editorial

WHILE the Government puts in measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19), it is important for everyone to get facts from trusted sources.
PNG as of yesterday has recorded 31 Covid-19 cases with the highest of 24 in Port Moresby with a spike of 19 new cases, Western three, East New Britain with two, while Eastern Highlands and Morobe had one each.
In April, a 30-day state of emergency was declared in the country which included domestic flights being halted for 14 days; all travel between provinces banned for 14 days; all education holidays were brought forward; and non-essential staff were told to stay home.
All this followed the confirmation of one person with the coronavirus in Papua New Guinea.
Prime Minister James Marape this week said they would do their best to protect the country from the pandemic.
New measures were released yesterday. This is not to cause panic but to put in place mechanisms to control and prevent any further spreading of the virus.
The fight to contain the Covid-19 pandemic is global.
All nations are working together on this.
If ever there is a time and a need to put aside enmity between our politicians and bureaucrats, it is now.
Unfortunately, a big problem with this pandemic is that health measures curtailing the movements of people and social contact hurt economic activities and businesses.
It is best to be vigilant and cautious. We all need to be intentional and thoughtful when communicating on social media and other communication platforms.
The National since March has been emphasising the importance of communicating Covid-19 as important in supporting people to take effective action to help combat the disease and to avoid fuelling fear and stigma.
When talking about the coronavirus disease, certain words and language may have a negative meaning for people and fuel stigmatising attitudes.
The Government through the Health Department and the mainstream media have an important role to play in preventing and stopping stigma relating to the Covid-19.
Let us promote content around basic infection prevention practices, symptoms of Covid-19 and when to seek health care.
Let’s share facts and accurate information about the coronavirus. The way we communicate can affect the attitude of others.
In an age where information is mass produced and accessible at the touch of a button, what the public really should have is relevant knowledge.
This information should be available to everyone for them to make sound and educated decisions.
It is for everyone’s benefit that these measures are being put in place – from social distances to getting into crowded areas and the simplest reminder of personal hygiene.
The message of practicing hand hygiene (wash your hands regularly with soap and water), respiratory hygiene (cover your cough), and food safety (cook food well before eating) as a prevention measure for yourself as well as your family members and your community must continue.
We all need to get the basic of personal hygiene right and adhere to the don’ts and dos of the lockdown.
And so in the coming days, let’s all pay attention to what the Government has announced to take effect and to abide by it to stop the virus from entering our respective communities.

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