EDITOR — EACH person infected with COVID-19 is said to pass it on to an average of two to three other people in the early stages of an outbreak.
The incubation period – the time between infection and symptoms appearing – has been found to be around five days for COVID-19, although it can take up to 14 days for symptoms to appear, according to research in China.
If you are infected, and continue to socialise as normal, it is likely you will pass the virus on to between two and three friends or family members, who would each then go on to infect a further two to three people.
Within one month, one case can lead to 244 other cases and in two months, this soars to 59 604.
This is the likely multiplier effect.
Many countries around the world are now practicing ‘social distancing’ to slow the spread of COVID-19. Mass gatherings have been stopped, public spaces like leisure centres, pubs and clubs have been closed as well as schools and in some places a total lockdown, with people forced to stay indoors.
Zimbabwe has followed suit, with President Emmerson Mnangagwa announcing a raft of measures aimed at minimising the contact of people, such as closing all educational institutions and the ban on all social gatherings.
Despite these measures, the level of nonchalance and indifference being displayed by Zimbabweans in the midst of this health crisis, which has already claimed a life, is alarming.
Folks are still going about their business as usual, taking little or no heed to the President’s call for social distancing.
This has proved tragic in countries such as Italy, the US and Spain where people continued living normally in spite of their governments’ calls. This has now caused damage that will take years to reverse.
Prevention is better than cure!