Do not be selfish — Practice social distancingDr. Veita Bland / May 8, 2020
COVID-19 has changed the world we live in. Though we all long for the “olden days” when we could enjoy our high maintenance ways of getting our hair and nails done, going to the movies or just meeting friends for a meal or a drink, the reality of this present world is different. We all must comprehend that fact and behave accordingly.
It is quite remarkable that many people have decided that the medical experts on COVID-19 have no bearing on their lives. It is amazing when I see people, who refuse to wear a mask when out in public and don’t take social distancing seriously.
This pandemic is a profoundly serious event. The word pandemic is not an everyday term. It is a special word brought out to express the widespread nature of this event, a worldwide infection that is affecting the lives of people in just about every corner of this world as we know it.
What is so devastating is that this virus does not play by any rules and, up until now, we have not seen anything like it. We are seeing it strike down people with previously known health problems. That is not a surprise. We are also seeing that it brings down healthy young people with no known health problems.
The sequela of this virus seems to grow with each passing day. The pneumonia associated with it tends to wreak havoc in the lungs. Now we have encountered COVID-19 patients with neurological problems that include loss of smell and difficulty in thinking and processing information. These COVID-19 symptoms are most unexpected and a downright scary part of this pandemic. What does the future hold for patients affected with these neurological difficulties?
We are seeing people develop blood clots as part of this illness, an event that would not normally have been expected. How will these blood clots affect their circulation in the future?
Another enigma is the question of the antibodies. Yes, those who have had COVID-19 do make antibodies but what is their quality? The WHO (World Health Organization) recently stated that even with the antibodies, a previously infected individual is not guaranteed protection from COVID-19 as would have been expected. That individual could be re-infected with the COVID-19 virus. Again, this virus plays by its own rules.
What is scarier for me as a health provider is the fact that we are seeing people present with the disease who have no symptoms? They are like our Typhoid Mary. They spread the disease far and wide. They infect unsuspecting relatives, friends and those who have underlying illnesses.
Social distancing and wearing masks have made a difference. I employ upon people who have not taken up these policies to do them for their friends, family members and their neighbors. It is vital that people take on these practices for their children, their beloved parents, grandparents and even for the stranger with a compromised immune system.
Do not be selfish. Practice social distancing and wear a mask. COVID-19 does not care who you infect, it just infects.
CORRECTION: The headline of last week’s column should have read that Dr. Annette Bey is the Medical Director for Guilford County Department of Public Health. The acting Guilford County Public Health Director is Dr. Iulia Vann.
Dr. Veita Bland is a board-certified Greensboro physician and hypertension specialist. Dr. Bland’s radio show, “It’s a Matter of Your Health,” can be heard live on Wednesdays, 5:30 p.m. on N.C. A&T State University’s WNAA, 90.1 FM. Listeners may call in and ask questions. The show is replayed on Sirius 142 at 5 p.m. on Wed. Email Dr. Bland at firstname.lastname@example.org.