It has become very important for Ghanaians to adhere to the numerous preventive measures and guidelines to avoid getting infected with coronavirus.
So far, Ghana has recorded six positive cases. President Akufo-Addo in an address to the nation on Sunday [15th March 2020] entreated Ghanaians to adhere to the preventive measures outlined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Ghana Health Service. One of the preventive measures that the president stressed on is ‘social distancing’.
You may ask, what is social distancing and how does it work?
Well, below is all you need to know about social distancing:
What is social distancing?
Social distancing is a public health practice that aims to prevent sick people from coming in close contact with healthy people in order to reduce opportunities for disease transmission. It can include large-scale measures like cancelling group events or closing public spaces, as well as individual decisions such as avoiding crowds.
With COVID-19, the goal of social distancing right now is to slow down the outbreak in order to reduce the chance of infection among high-risk populations and to reduce the burden on health care systems and workers. Experts describe this as “flattening the curve,” which generally refers to the potential success of social distancing measures to prevent surges in illness that could overwhelm health care systems.
How to practice social distancing
The CDC defines social distancing as it applies to COVID-19 as “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.”
This means, no hugs, no handshakes.
It’s particularly important—and perhaps obvious—to maintain that same 6-foot distance from anyone who is demonstrating signs of illness, including coughing, sneezing, or fever.
Along with physical distance, proper hand-washing is important for protecting not only yourself but others around you—because the virus can be spread even without symptoms.
Washing hands is recommended any time you enter from indoors to outdoors, before you eat, and before you spend time with people who are more vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19, including older adults and those with serious chronic medical conditions.
On the broader scale, a number of actions taken in recent days are designed to encourage social distancing, including:
- Schools, colleges, and universities suspending in-person classes and converting to remote online instruction.
- Cities cancelling events, including sporting events, festivals, and parades.
- Workplaces encouraging or mandating flexible work options, including telecommuting.
- Organisations and businesses cancelling large gatherings, including conferences.
- Houses of worship suspending services.
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