Our mission at SCW is to “protect and conserve natural resources and wildlife habitats through education and community mobilization as well as integrated alternative livelihoods”. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic threatens this mission since as more people get infected and restrictions to protect our health get higher, a lot of us are prevented from education and work and therefore unable to secure their livelihoods – these times and in the long time run.
Everyone can help to stop COVID-19
This is what you need to know:
You can have the virus even without symptoms
When someone who has COVID-19 coughs or exhales they release droplets of infected fluid. Most of these droplets fall on nearby surfaces and objects – such as tables or phones. People could catch COVID-19 by touching contaminated surfaces or objects – and then touching their eyes, nose or mouth. If they are standing within one meter of a person with COVID-19 they can catch it by breathing in droplets coughed out or exhaled by them.
After infection it takes between 2 and 10 days before people become sick and develop a fever. Most persons infected with COVID-19 only experience mild symptoms and recover. This means you can have and spread the virus even without noticing it.
Some experience more serious illness and may require hospital care. The risk of serious illness rises with age: people over 40 seem to be more vulnerable than those under 40. People with weakened immune systems and people with conditions such as diabetes, heart ,and lung disease are also more vulnerable to serious illness.
Protect yourself and others
This is what you can do:
Wash your hands frequently
Washing your hands regularly and at least 30 seconds with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands.
Maintain social distancing
Maintain at least one-metre distance between yourself and others in public. When someone coughs or sneezes they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain the virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth
Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
On average, we touch our faces 3.6 times per hour and transport pathogens in our systems. Frequent hand washing and disinfection does not protect against the negative effects of this movement. It is hard to fight the habit of scratching your nose or rub your eyes – this can help:
- Fold your hands, when you are not using them.
- Tie your hair together, so you don’t have to strike it out of you face.
- Use perfumed soap and creams.
- Clean your smartphone regularly.
Cover your mouth and nose with your elbow when you sneeze
Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately. This prevents you from spreading droplets that might contain the virus to the people and on the objects around you.
Stay at home
If it is possible for you, stay and work from home. You can have the virus without recognizing it. To prevent it from spreading it is important that every one of us tries to isolate and meet as less different people as possible.
Make sure to have a daily routine (e.g. wake up at 6 am, have breakfast, do some sport/movement, work from home or learn something new …) to stay happy and motivated during isolation. If you feel lonely or bored, maintain your social relationships via online calls and start a new hobby like painting, crafting, playing an instrument or learn a new language.
Visit the doctor only in case of emergency
If you are not in the risk group (people with weakened immune systems and people with conditions such as diabetes, heart and lung disease are also more vulnerable to serious illness.) avoid visits to medical facilities. Try to recover small symptoms at home and keep a distance from others. Avoiding doctors and hospitals helps them to operate more effectively and protects the medical staff from getting infected.
Wear a mask, but wear it right!
- If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with the suspected 2019-nCoV infection.
- Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
- Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
- If you wear a mask, then you must know how to use it and dispose of it properly.
- Before putting on a mask, clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
- Avoid touching the mask while using it; if you do, clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
- Cover mouth and nose with mask and make sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask.
- Replace the mask with a new one as soon as it is damp and do not re-use single-use masks.
- Remove the mask from behind (do not touch the front of the mask); discard immediately in a closed bin; clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
Stop eating and trading wildlife
Consumption and farming of wild animals are assumed to be the cause of the coronavirus epidemic. In general, wildlife trade is illegal. Thus, there is more than one good reason to ban wildlife meat from your menu.
Stay informed and don’t believe every myth
There are a lot of myths around the Coronavirus causing fear or misbehaviour. Consider rumours critically in order not to endanger yourself and others.
- People of all ages can be infected by Coronavirus. Older people and people with pre-existing medical conditions appear to be more vulnerable to becoming seriously ill.
- COVID-19 virus can be transmitted in areas with hot and humid climates.
- The Coronavirus cannot be transmitted through mosquito bites.
- An ultraviolet disinfection lamp cannot kill the Coronavirus.
- Spraying alcohol or chlorine all over your body will not kill viruses that have already entered your body.
- Vaccines against pneumonia do not protect against the virus.
- Eating garlic is healthy but does not prevent infection.
- To date (30/03/2020) there is no specific medicine recommended to prevent or treat the virus.
- Antibiotics do not work against viruses.
The source of this guideline is the World Health Organization. You can find more information on WHO.int.
Keep safe and share this information!