The Malta Independent 30 March 2023, Thursday
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TMID Editorial: Covid-19 and our world today

Friday, 20 January 2023, 09:55 Last update: about 3 months ago

Covid-19 has been out of the spotlight for a while, but yesterday it was brought back into the news.

A home for the elderly in Naxxar has closed its doors to visitors after detecting several cases of Covid-19 among residents. 

There are currently 317 active cases in the country, which is quite low. We have gotten used to living with Covid-19. But we must remember that there are those among us in our society who are more vulnerable to it than others. People who, if they get Covid, could face serious complications. A total of 823 people died (including one yesterday) while positive for Covid in Malta since the first case reached our shores, which isn’t a small number. 


The vaccines worked well. They either provided immunity or helped reduce the symptoms in many. But Covid around the world has not gone away, nor will it likely go away, and so living with it has to be our reality. 

But there is nothing wrong in taking precautions. It was reported that the Simblija Naxxar elderly home closed its doors to visitors after detecting several cases of Covid-19 among residents. Remember, the elderly were considered to be vulnerable to the virus. The home said that it will ban visitors for seven days to prevent the spread of the virus.   

The home must ensure that the elderly residents have ample contact with their relatives and friends on the outside through video calls, phone calls and should even consider visits through Perspex, as was seen during the pandemic. But protecting the vulnerable must be a priority, and being cautious is good. 

While the impact of Covid-19 locally is near to non-existent, Covid has not gone away. Some countries have high numbers, and aside from that, there is a new strain in a number of countries called XBB.1.5. So when precautions need to be taken, they should be taken. 

There are also lessons to be learnt through our experience with Covid. First of all, when the pandemic hit, it quickly showed just how fragile our way of life is. Shops closed, restaurants closed, travel came to a halt… it was like something out of a horror movie. We stopped meeting our friends and colleagues and our social lives crumbled. The world wasn’t ready for such a situation. It was, to most, unthinkable. 

Yet we weathered it. We made it through those tough times. People came together and did what was necessary, for the most part, to protect one another. We couldn’t go to work, so we worked from home. We couldn’t go out, so we spent more time with our families. We couldn’t send our children to school, so education continued online. We couldn’t stay in large groups, so many took to the countryside.

It wasn’t ideal by any means. But people and governments learned how to deal with such a situation. Our experience from that shouldn’t be lost. The importance of the environment, for instance, was an issue that really came front and centre, and we must not lose sight of that. It highlighted the importance of protecting the green areas we have. The importance of having structures in place for people to be able to work remotely is also something that was learned, and this could be utilised by companies and employees alike. 

One also hopes countries are more cautious in the future, so that we could prevent such a quick and global spread of a disease.



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