Fighting stigma around Covid-19 | HT Editorial – Editorials
The battle against coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is arguably the most serious global, national, and individual struggle that humanity has faced in decades. It is important to underline the threat posed by the disease; It is important to emphasize the measures that each individual must take against him; Even extreme measures, such as blockages, are essential to prevent the spread of the disease. All of this, therefore, requires messages that focus on the dangers of the disease.
However, at the same time, there should be a second message along with it. It has to revolve around how the disease is, overwhelmingly, not life threatening. You must emphasize that those who are infected with the virus are not criminals, but victims, and even if there is no cure, proper corrective care will see them recover. You have to focus on how patients require empathy, not ostracism. And it has to be emphasized that the reason infected and vulnerable to infection are being asked to isolate and quarantine is so they don’t pass it on to others.
This dual message is important because of the increasing reports that many of those who develop symptoms are reluctant to go to hospitals because of the stigma surrounding the disease. This, in turn, means that they report at a later stage, when symptoms become more severe: in the process, they transmit the disease to many others, but more importantly, their prospects for survival diminish. Addressing the stigma around you is an important element in the battle against the pandemic.