COVID-19 and lockdown
COVID-19 or the Corona pandemic has caused chaos worldwide with millions of people being infected and thousands dead due to the virus. Most countries in the world have responded to the pandemic by imposing a lockdown. The lockdown has resulted in a total closure of cities with schools, colleges, offices, industries, malls, and other places being closed down. Many cities have closed down public transport in the lockdown. The lockdown has affected people as they are not able to go for work. It has caused many companies and factories to close down. Many people have lost their jobs or have not got their salaries due to the lockdown.
The lockdown has posed economic hardship to people. This has led to many people questioning whether the lockdown was needed or not. Questions have also been raised on how a lockdown can halt the spread of the Coronavirus. The article answers all these questions.
COVID-19 refers to the pandemic caused by the Novel Corona virus. The virus that originated in Wuhan in end-2019 soon started spreading across the world as people traveled. By the time governments could work out a plan to deal with this situation, the infection was spreading across the globe. The Corona virus was more potent compared to other viruses and could spread faster. The virus could stay alive on surfaces for a long time and spread through droplets in the air. This allowed the infection to spread fast. The virus severely affected people and causes respiratory problems that lead to the death of many people.
There is no cure for Corona. Doctors treat patients for the symptoms. Those who suffer severe respiratory problems need to be put on a ventilator. Efforts have already started to find a vaccine for this disease but it would take a very long time. Keeping these considerations in mind, the only option available for governments across the world was to stop the virus from spreading. The use of masks and social distancing was practiced but as long as people kept moving around, so did the virus. The remedy for this was the lockdown.
How does a lockdown help?
A lockdown ensures that only people who work in essential areas come out of their homes. Schools, colleges, offices, theatres, malls, parks, and public places remain closed. This ensures that people remain indoors and come out only for essential reasons like buying groceries or for medical purposes. The lockdown stops the virus from spreading. It is not a fool proof measure but the main objective is to stop the steep rise in cases from increasing. Since the number of cases were growing exponentially, the need was to flatten the curve or bring down the number of cases.
The lockdown helps in many ways. This includes:
- Keeping most of the people, especially those who have weak immunity inside, so they can be protected from the virus.
- Saving lives of people by ensuring that they don’t get infected.
- The lockdown ensures that the spread of the virus gets drastically reduces since people remain indoors and do not have physical contact.
- One of the biggest reasons for locking down was to prevent the healthcare system from being overloaded.
- Panic due to COVID-19 would result in people flocking to hospitals. There would be many serious cases and the number of hospital beds were not sufficient.
- More importantly, those who have serious symptoms need ICU facilities and a ventilator. There were shortages of ventilators across the world.
- Had there been no lockdown the number of cases would have shot up drastically leading to thousands of people needing ventilators, which would not be available. This would have created a serious healthcare crisis.
- In the process, those who have other medical conditions would fail to get treatment since hospitals would be overrun with Corona cases.
- Above all, such a situation would have led to panic, creating a collapse of different systems.
- To avoid all this, the only solution was to reduce the spread of the virus infection. This is where a lockdown helps.
Coping up during the lockdown
During the lockdown, most organizations have started working from home. They allow employees to do their work at home and communicate online. In this situation, communication plays a key role. Apart from online communication, the use of business text messaging has a key role to play. Text messaging is used by businesses to reach out to customers. In fact, sms marketing has become a key marketing strategy for companies. This is because of the high read and response rates of text message.
Text marketing strategy can be used even during the lockdown period. Companies can use it to send messages to employees with work from home information. Details of opening of stores, opening times, protocols to be followed, new rules, etc. can be sent by SMS. An online text messagecan even be sent to customers informing them of how they can get access to products and services. This can be made easy thanks to the use of messaging.
Messaging is even used by the government to reach out to citizens to send them alerts and notifications. They can use mass text messaging to send information on precautions to be taken, hygiene norms, lockdown rules, etc. They can use the schedule text message feature to send messages at regular frequencies. Apart from this, whether it is the government or private organizations, they can find out the response of the recipients by using the survey text message option. A simple questionnaire can be sent to citizens/employees/customers to get their feedback on various issues. Text messaging is playing a key role in this pandemic situation.
Work from home and the use of group texting can help people during the lockdown. This allows them to try to get on with their lives as they wait for the lockdown to end. The priority is to flatten the curve and allow the infection rate to come down so the lockdown can be lifted and life can continue normally.
I am Susan Raj, Marketing Head of TXTImpact provides Business Text Messaging products for marketing and support customers to increase your client base. Our Enterprise Text Message Marketing Platform designed for your business, allows marketers to communicate and engage customers on the go instantly.