Ways to Prevent Coronavirus to Enter Your Homes

Key tips to keep your home coronavirus free

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As the deadly coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) spreading rapidly, people are doing everything to keep themselves safe. Pixabay

BY BHARAT UPADHYAY

As the deadly coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) spreading rapidly, people are doing everything to keep themselves safe but what about your own abode?

To make your home coronavirus free, health experts have shared some tips such as cleaning all kitchen surfaces every time you finish cooking and keeping separate pairs of footwear for outdoors and indoors to fight the virus.

According to Praveen Gupta, Director and Head Neurology, Fortis Memorial Research Institute in New Delhi, all surfaces should be cleaned routinely with soap and other disinfectants available to make your house coronavirus proof.

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“Apart from cleaning the surfaces, other objects like light switches, desk, keyboards, doorknobs, toilet, closets should also be cleaned. Please make sure that you do not touch any object while cleaning with bare hands; gloves are necessary and make sure to dispose of these gloves after the cleaning is done,” Gupta told IANS.

In case when you are buying vegetables and fruits from outside, please make sure that you clean the bag very carefully before entering the house.

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To make your home coronavirus free, health experts have shared some tips such as cleaning all kitchen surfaces every time you finish cooking and keeping separate pairs of footwear for outdoors and indoors to fight the virus. Pixabay

If possible, it is advisable to keep the bags outside your home or in a corner for at least 24-48 hours.

“Considering coronavirus spreads through droplets, please make sure to wash your vegetables and fruits in potassium permanganate solution or you can also wash it with hot water as well for at least 5-10 minutes,” the doctor emphasised.

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Stay home as much as possible but there are times when we can’t avoid visits to grocery store or pharmacy at some point.

“It is advisable to avoid unnecessary to and fro to any market area and stay in house. Disinfect everything you touch thoroughly and make sure that you wash your hands frequently. Also, supervise your pets in the backyard and keep them away from meeting or playing with other people,” said Rajesh Chawla, Senior Consultant, Respiratory Medicine, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, New Delhi.

“Make use of hypochlorite to clean every corner of your house or make use of bleaching powder to clean your house,” Chawla added.

If someone is sick at your home, please make sure that a distance is maintained from that person and his or her clothes should be washed separately.

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Make sure you take proper precautions at your home to prevent coronavirus. Pixabay

“One needs to understand while performing all the above activities, wearing gloves is necessary and when you are giving your clothes for laundry, please use disposable gloves and it is preferred to wash your clothes at home only and avoid any outside contact,” Chawla said.

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Dr Sudhish Sehra, HOD, Internal Medicine, Sri Balaji Action Medical Institute in New Delhi said that in addition to frequently sanitizing your hands, keeping the house and your immediate surroundings clean is equally important.

“Start with basic dusting while covering your face with a mask/alternative clothing such as a handkerchief, and disinfect the furniture surfaces and the floor. Clean all kitchen surfaces every time you finish cooking. Keep separate pairs of footwear for outdoors and indoors,” Sehra told IANS.

India has been under a 21-day lockdown in a bid to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

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The tally of novel coronavirus cases in India reached 1966 on Thursday, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Of these, 150 people have recovered and discharged from the hospitals, one person migrated while 50 deaths have been reported so far. (IANS)

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Social Media: A Boon Amid Lockdown

Social media has proved itself a boon, be it dealing with a crisis or emergency and sometimes even saving a life

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Social media has proved its worth in these times. Pixabay

BY PUJA GUPTA

There have been several incidents when social media has proved itself a boon; be it dealing with a crisis or emergency and sometimes even saving a life. There are various groups and communities formed on different platforms that work as a support system of communities.

‘My Pincode’ is one such group on Facebook that was launched by the NGO Social Media Matters in April when the entire country was confined in their houses. It is about local groups on Facebook to virtually connect, communicate, collaborate and create a support system for each other in their respective pincode areas. These groups bring together users, community leaders, subject matter experts, resource points and organizations at a very hyper-local level to provide immediate support, relief, and share critical information.

Blood donation, ration supply, repair work, daily essential information, government advisories are the highlights of My Pincode as these demands top the charts across posts made by users. Partners like Sarvahitey, Akshay Patra Foundation, Blood Bank were fundamental in their roles to look into all the requests and take immediate action.

Shantanu Garg, who lives in West Delhi, posted on the group requesting for a blood donor on behalf of a friend. Within a few hours, moderators of the group who tagged all volunteers and other admins and started reaching out to other blood donor agencies were able to arrange the required amount of blood. There have also been other instances of such donor requests. Sajal Bhateja’s request for urgent requirement of blood on South Delhi Group was also addressed in two hours.

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There are various groups and communities formed on different platforms that work as a support system of communities. Pixabay

Other topics that are being discussed on the groups are:

Which is the nearest clinic I can visit?

Where can I get emergency help?

What does the situation look like right now on the roads?

What are the queues like at the shops?

How much longer will supplies last?

Are courier services working in the area?

Which are the nearest Government and Private Testing Centres?

Can I visit the police stations?

Are postal services working in the area?

How do I obtain a curfew pass?

What is the situation at the hospitals?

Are there any blood donor requests?

In an attempt to bring together communities from 170 hotspots of India across 17 states (as identified by the Central Government of India in April 15, 2020) and crowdsource help, open groups have been formed and are being managed by moderators and group admins, trained by the NGO. It will be further extended to 32 states and union territories.

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Social media groups bring together users, community leaders, subject matter experts, resource points, and organizations at a very hyper-local level to provide immediate support. Pixabay

Each state has a moderator and several admins who have been moderating the discussions and letting users connect with each other for essential and verified information as to keep fake profiles/information away.

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Every day the lead moderators sift through all the groups to look for any inappropriate content that is posted/approved/queried. As soon as users post on the group, the network of admins gets activated and they look into the prime information or request made by the user. Once that is identified, the request is verified and then the network gets activated to resolve the request. (IANS)

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3 Live Coronaviruses Don’t Match COVID-19 in Wuhan Lab

Three strains of live coronaviruses in the Wuhan Institute of Virology don't match the virus that causes COVID-19

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None of the 3 live Coronaviruses in Wuhan lab matched the virus that causes COVID-19. Pixabay

There are three strains of live coronaviruses in the Wuhan Institute of Virology, but none matches the virus that causes COVID-19, according to the director of the institute.

In an interview to state broadcaster CGTN aired on Saturday night, Wang Yanyi said that any suggestion that the SARS-CoV-2 leaked from her institute is “pure fabrication”.

After the COVID-19 outbreak started in Wuhan late last year and eventually became a global pandemic, the biosafety laboratory in China’s Hubei province has been in the eye of a storm as conspiracy theories suggesting the virus could have leaked from the lab started gaining traction.

Those were later even picked by US President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

However, Wang stressed that the “current consensus of the international academic community is that the virus originated from wild animals.”

She also underlined the need for global cooperation to find answers to questions such as where the viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2 are.

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The world need to cooperate over this as there are many viruses that are highly similar to SARS-CoV-2. (Representational Image). Pixabay

“Now we have three strains of live viruses. One of them has the highest similarity, 96 per cent to the SARS virus. But their highest similarity to SARS-CoV-2 only reaches 79.8 per cent,” Wang told the broadcaster.

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Over 5.3 million people in the world have so far tested positive for COVID-19 and more than 3,40,000 have died due to the pandemic, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Wang said that her institute first received the clinical sample of the unknown pneumonia on December 30 last year. Before that they did not know the virus even existed.

“After we checked the pathogen within the sample, we found it contained a new coronavirus, which is now called SARS-CoV-2. We didn’t have any knowledge before that, nor had we ever encountered, researched or kept the virus,” she said. (IANS)

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DMRC Uses Pictorial Messages to Spread Awareness on COVID-19

The campaign of pictorial awareness has been planned under the supervision of DMRC's Safety department

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DMRC spreads awareness among citizens about COVID-19 through pictorial messages. Wikimedia Commons

Amid lockdown 4.0 and halted service of the metro rail in the city, the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) is engaged in spreading awareness about COVID-19 disease at its construction sites through pictorial messages, according to Covid-19 pandemic in India updates.

In a press statement, the DMRC said, “Along with all conventional methods to raise awareness about this pertinent issue, a number of pictorial awareness messages have been painted at DMRC’s sites so that the workers keep getting reminded about the precautions while at work.”

The campaign has been planned under the supervision of DMRC’s Safety department.

The DMRC asserted that all relevant government guidelines and advisories have been taken into consideration while planning the content. Easy language and pictorials have been used so that the messages are satisfactorily conveyed.

The DMRC said that getting the messages painted was a major challenge as most of the painters, who are generally engaged for such assignments, were unavailable during the ongoing lockdown. As an alternative mechanism, printed banners in flex were installed at a number of locations. “While the messages are largely bilingual, a lot of focus has been laid on the use of Hindi as a lot of workers are more proficient in reading Hindi,” said the DMRC.

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Painters were unavailable for making such messages because of the lockdown, said DMRC. (Representational Image). Pixabay

At present, the corporation is carrying out construction at about five to six different sites in the city including work sites of Dhansa, Airport Express Line expansion work in Dwarka as well as sites/casting yards for Phase 4 projects.

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It said that all guidelines set by the government agencies are being implemented while resuming works and contractors and workers are being sensitised about the precautionary guidelines at the beginning of work during the tool workshops.

“Displays with the necessary information regarding social distancing have been installed at the sites. Masks, sanitizers and thermal scanners have been made available at the sites as well. DMRC’s engineers are keeping a very close eye at the sites to ensure all norms are followed,” it said. (IANS)