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A senior corporate leader living in one of the leading cities in North America recently tested COVID 19 positive, he was on a personal trip to meet his friend in one of the European countries, few days after he got back from to his home town in 2nd week of March he was down with fever, he thought he will be ok by taking off the shelf paracetamol in few days, his fever didn’t come in control, reluctantly he consulted his family doctor, since he had a travel history his family doctor suggested he goes for COVID 19 test.

He was shocked when he heard he is COVID 19 positive

He said: “I did every possible thing I could to avoid COVID 19, I used sanitizer, I practiced social distancing, while using public toilets I always ensured I cleaned the surface with sanitizer, I didn’t touch any dirty surface… in spite of this how can I get COVID 19.”A few days later, he called his friend in Europe only to find he had tested positive as well. That was when it dawned upon him that he had been using his friend’s phone to make numerous phone calls all over Europe. The trusted smartphone, one of the mankind’s greatest inventions in the 21st Century, inevitably turned into a disease-carrying Trojan horse.

Dos and Don’ts

– Don’t borrow or use anyone else’s stuff

– Social distancing is important even amongst family members

– Avoid doing any cash, debit or credit card transactions instead use online transfer

– As per Rachel Graham an epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina, Coronavirus can survive on surfaces ranging from few hours to a day, it would be lot safer to use things after 24 hours of delivery at your home, unless you are equipped to sanitize every possible thing.

– If at all you are going to an ATM to withdraw cash, it would be better, if you use the sanitizer, both for your hands and the card right after you are done with the transaction.

The Perils of not Social Distancing

One family known to me in Europe has been tested COVID 19 positive. This family lives in the city which is currently going through a lockdown, every morning this family would go to a nearby park, since there was no one in the park they thought it’s safe, They would often sit on one of the benches in the park for a conversation, few days passed my friend was down with high fever followed by his wife which went on for 8 to 9 days , since they were only having fever and there is shortage of COVID testing kits their doctor recommended paracetamol, on 9th day the husband had difficulty in breathing and his wife began to cough continuously.

The last message I received from them on WhatsApp read “Please pray for us, this COVID 19 is intolerable.”From my friend’s experience, I learnt a very important lesson:- They did practice social distancing however by leaving their home during the lockdown they might have touched something in the garden which could have been touched by someone who was infected with COVID 19 virus. In a lockdown everyone is supposed to stay at home unless there is an emergency or one's occupation requires one to be on the ground to assist others in an emergency like doctors, nurses, police, firefighters and technicians.

Please take this 21-day lock down seriously. Stay Home! Stay Safe!

Manish Advani, also known as ‘The Coconut Man of India’, is a 7 Times TEDx Speaker and an award-winning storyteller. He currently works as General Manager Marketing and Communications for Schindler India Pvt. Ltd.

Disclaimer: Views expressed are personal.

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