"The strict implementation [of Covid-19 measures] does not depend sa variant. It should be strict every day, whether or not naay bag-ong variant, or wala because the variant that we have before is dangerous for us na dapat strict every day." -- Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio
THERE is a silver lining in the coming months as vaccine manufacturers and different nations roll-out a massive vaccination program in the hopes to return to normalcy.
However, we also greet the new year with the news of the discovery of the B.1.1.7 variant, which is one of four Sars-CoV-2 variants identified by the World Health Organization (WHO) so far. The variant was discovered in the United Kingdom in late December 2020 and is considered to be more infections than the dominant form of the virus, D614G.
Other variants of the virus are Cluster 5 among farmed mink in Denmark and the 501Y.V2 in South Africa.
While the discovery of the new Covid-19 strains can dampen our hopes, more studies have yet to be conducted to determine if these strains have any significant features that set it apart from the dominant strain.
Hence, we have to accept the reality that this Covid-19 pandemic will be one hell of a marathon for everyone. Some experts are saying that our normal lives may return in 2022, others say it will not be until 2023 or 2024.
This new reality we are in means we have to adjust the way we live in the sense that we abide by the current Covid-19 protocols that are in place.
We have to strictly follow the wearing of face masks, observe social distancing, and regular washing of hands with soap and water. When it is required of us, we must also wear our face shield.
Depending on where you live, the new normal will also require us to have our QR code or quarantine passes. In the cases of Davao City, the Safe Davao QR code is being required by several establishments already and those non-residents entering the city. The Food and Medicine passes are also being required in some establishments.
We have to live with the virus as we wait for the vaccine that could protect us from being infected with Covid-19. However, it is also not logical that we sit back and do nothing. Amid the pandemic, we will have to continue to work and make a living. We will still have to support our families and also do our part in allowing the local economy to move.
To move forward, we will have to adjust the way we live and follow minimum health protocols to ensure that the economy remains open and we do our part in managing the spread of the disease.