Up 'n' coming

Covid19 Phobia; Another Killer Syndrome

BY ANDAH BALIKIS

Since the emergence of the novel coronavirus late last year, a lot of scenarios have been witnessed. Though the efforts to contain and combat the deadly disease throughout the world tops the list, but other important implications are worth looking into. One of these is the phobia associated with the deadly virus.

Fears have been displayed among citizens, health practitioners, Covid19 patients, government, hospitals e.t.c. in the way the situation is being handled, leading to different levels of phobia among individuals.

On several accounts, patients who had shown the symptoms of the deadly disease hid themselves due to fear, resulted to self medication, among others, which has claimed many lives. Some patients who tested positive to the virus absconded from isolation centers, while some even refused to be tested because of the fear of possible infection in the process of conducting the test. All these, in one way or the other has led to more deaths of people, not due to the virus but due to phobia for the virus.

Another cause of death is the obvious display of high level of fear by medical practitioners in hospitals. Many patients who are suffering from varieties of other ailments, such as, fever, athma, heart disease and many other respiratory diseases, in need of urgent medical attention have been abandoned by doctors and rejected by hospitals due to the fear of the possibility of being Covid19 patients.

Many of the Covid19 patients have also protested on many accounts, complaining of being treated pooly, ranging from, poor feeding, accomodation and general welfare. Recently, one of the stranded Nigerians that were brought in from Dubai, who are presently on 14 days isolation as part of the guidelines set aside to prevent the wide spread of the virus was reported to be dead due to possible Covid19 complications. A day after the announcement, others protested of poor treatment in isolation and negligence might have been the real cause of the death, as the victim was said to have undergone surgery a day before their departure, thus needed special and urgent medical attention, yet kept together with them, until her death.

With all these scenarios, obviously Covid19 phobia is real and needs to be addressed as a matter of urgency, if not, many lives will be lost on daily basis due to fear, and not the deadly virus.

Measures should be put in place to recognize and treat patients suffering from other diseases, the total welfare of people in isolation and Covid19 patients should be looked into, to ensure they’re properly cared for and to prevent future death cases of avoidable deaths. More sensitization should also be made publicly to eradicate the high level of phobia for Covid19. May our world be healed soon enough.

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