Singaporeans Still Hang Out In Small Groups Or Go To Workout Classes, Defeating Purpose Of Social Distancing
When the government implemented further social distancing measures amid the Covid-19 outbreak, some didn’t seem to have gotten the message.
“As long as my group doesn’t have more than 10 people, it’s okay”, some joked. “In my fitness class we’re spread out 1 metre apart, so it’s fine to keep going”, others reasoned.
Singaporeans have been living in a parallel universe, it seems, and one person has had enough.
Taking to Facebook in a series of pictures, the frontline healthcare worker who works as a respiratory therapist at a local hospital called out millennials who continue to meet up with friends or go to yoga class despite strict social distancing rules.
Respiratory therapists work in the ICU, operating ventilation machines for those who have trouble breathing. So she has first-hand experience in dealing with patients who might be affected by Covid-19.
She reminds us that we have a part to play in stopping Covid-19 too, and that is by making the right decisions.
Meeting up with friends isn’t social distancing done right
While authorities in many developed countries are urging everyone to stay at home, the Singaporean says younger people in their mid 20s-30s are seemingly doing the opposite.
They’re still having dinner with friends or going to group workout sessions, which kind of defeats the purpose of social distancing.
She says these people have “zero right” to call out boomers for panic buying or 19-year-olds for wanting to party before clubs are closed.
Meeting different groups of people in the current climate to catch up just isn’t necessary.
The social distancing rules are not for Singaporeans to continue hanging out in groups of 3 or 4, she points out.
Mingling with friends can put many at risk
The logic behind avoiding unnecessary gatherings is to minimise community spread, she explains.
Meeting different groups of friends may actually spread Covid-19 beyond just a single group. If one person in Group A is infected after a karaoke session, and then meets Group B for supper, both groups aren’t the only ones in trouble.
Family and friends of those in Groups A and B are also at risk. This is how Covid-19 spreads in the community.
So it’s not just large-scale gatherings which should be on hold, as the Singaporean points out.
If everyone meets 2 or 3 groups of friends a week and just 1 person is infected, the effects can be devastating to Singapore.
Our hospitals will be overloaded, as is the case in Italy and Iran right now. 5-6 local cases can become 20-30.
Situation in hospitals is getting worse
With Covid-19 cases on the rise in Singapore, hospitals have been using up more and more wards since the start of the month.
At first, the hospital where the Singaporean works – which wasn’t disclosed – was using 4 private wards for those who exhibit fever or respiratory symptoms.
There were just 2 wards used for confirmed cases, and most of them weren’t full.
At the moment, 5 private wards are being used for the former and 4 for confirmed cases.
There are calls for more beds as the number of Covid-19 cases grow exponentially in Singapore.
And now, the cases will keep growing unless “the TRUE frontliners” – yes, that’s us Singaporeans – distance ourselves properly.
Let’s play our part in social distancing and not be complacent
The number of cases exploded in developed countries as they were slow to react.
Meanwhile, although Singapore was one of the first countries outside China to have Covid-19 cases, we managed to flatten the curve by the start of March thanks to years of planning since SARS and H1N1.
However, Singaporeans seem to have taken things for granted since, and the cases have only grown exponentially.
She ends off the series by reminding us to not be complacent and take a look at countries like Italy and the United States which didn’t prepare early enough.
Singapore doesn’t have to be like them if we do our part and stop unnecessary gatherings.
Please stay at home unless absolutely necessary.