On March 11 (Wednesday), the World Health Organisation declared COVID-19 a global pandemic after 1,18,000 confirmed cases and 4,291 deaths in 114 countries were reported. Following the announcement almost all countries, including India, have scaled up its responses and put in place even stricter controls to contain the spread of coronavirus cases.
Even as the world tries to contain COVID-19 and grapple with its fallout there are many across the globe who are exhibiting the most bizarre reactions to the spread of Coronavirus, knowingly or unknowingly becoming a deterrent in tackling the epidemic.
With more and more people searching online for information about the coronavirus outbreak, they can easily encounter a barrage of misleading and potentially dangerous information, which is probably prompting them to react in the mindless way as they have been doing.
It was reported today that a man who has been tested positive for the novel coronavirus in Thrissur in Kerala and has been in contact with nearly 1000 people, had at first, denied having travelled in the same flight in which the Ranni-based family who came from Italy and later tested positive for the Coronavirus travelled. He reportedly also resisted treatment, but later, the health department forcefully admitted him in the hospital.
The man was traced only after those who came from Italy were diagnosed with the disease. This Thrissur native is now under treatment in a district hospital.
At the time when the government of India has virtually shut down the country off to foreign tourists as a preventive measure and making foolproof arrangements to tackle the spread of the deadly virus, it was reported how at least seven COVID 19 suspects have gone missing in Punjab.
The wife of the Google employee in Karnataka has also been tested positive. In her case, she had fled from the quarantine facility on March 8 and had taken a flight to Delhi and a train to Agra. She was found by healthcare workers in Agra to be living with 8 family members. She could only be taken away to be kept in isolation after the police intervened. Her family even tried to lie that she has gone back to Bengaluru.
In case these suspects who have gone missing are found to be infected with the deadly virus, they would inadvertently be spreading the virus to other people as the novel Covid-19 is highly contagious. It is being believed that people infected with the novel coronavirus shed large quantities of the virus early in their illness.
However such rashness is not only limited to India. Despite the virus’ low fatality rate, the sudden outbreak and rapid spread of the novel virus and the myths surrounding it has sparked fear and anxiety across the world. Some people’s bizarre psychological reactions, which is a result of this fear, is doing them more harm than good.
It was reported on March 8th, how a man in Japan, infected with the Coronavirus, went on a pub crawl to deliberately infect others after finding out he had been infected with the virus. Before he left, he allegedly told a family member: “I am going to spread the virus.” He is now understood to be in isolation at a hospital.
In another such bizarre incident, an NBA player, who has been tested positive for coronavirus had reportedly gone on a peculiar spree before he even knew that he is infected with the novel Covid-19 virus. While attending a news conference the player attempted to mock the coronavirus crisis by deliberately touching all the mics and recording devices at the venue. Rudy Gobert, of the Utah Jazz, became the first player in the NBA confirmed to have the coronavirus on Wednesday night.
Gobert’s bizarre gesture took place in an interview room after the NBA barred reporters from entering locker rooms because of the outbreak. As he left, he appeared to touch all the mics and recording devices in apparent mockery.
On Thursday, the Jazz announced that a second player on the team tested positive for Covid-19 after the entire team and travelling staff had been tested.
Recently in Iran, it was reported that 44 persons were killed after drinking toxic alcohol, after believing the rumours that alcohol can prevent coronavirus.
Coronavirus is a highly contagious, deadly respiratory disease, the outbreak of which was first reported from Wuhan, China, on 31 December 2019. The transmission of the virus takes place when someone who is infected comes in contact with another person. According to medical experts, coughing, sneezing or even shaking hands with an infected person can cause exposure.