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Wednesday 13th May 2020 – Day 51: Looking Ahead with Government
We wrote about keeping informed in the previous article and so it is appropriate that we start with the Government’s document “Our Plan to Rebuild” that came out Monday, (click on that link if you want to read it all,) which we felt does an excellent job. (There will no doubt be negatives and we’ll cover those in a future article). Here are some specific quotes that touch on some of the key things people ask about under our headings:
1. Alert Levels: In a previous article on the PM’s speech on Sunday we noted the existence of ‘Alert levels’ The document lays them out as follows:
“The alert levels are:
Level 1 COVID-
Level 2 COVID-
Level 3 A COVID-
Level 4 A COVID-
Level 5 as level four and there is a material risk of healthcare services being overwhelmed.”
2. General Handling of life ahead: The documents states (and these are limited quotes):
“Work: For the foreseeable future workers should continue to work from home rather than the normal physical workplace, wherever possible…. All workers who cannot work from home should travel to work if their workplace is open… anyone who has symptoms, however mild, or is in a household where someone has symptoms should not leave their house to go to work.
Schools: Schools should prepare to begin to open for more children from 1st of June. The government expects children to be able to return to early years settings, and for Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 to be back in school in smaller sizes, from this point. The Government's ambition is for all primary school children to return to school before the summer for a month if feasible, though this will be kept under review.
Travel: When travelling everybody (including critical workers) should continue to avoid public transport wherever possible…. Social distancing guidance on public transport must be followed rigorously.
Face Coverings: Homemade cloth face coverings can help reduce the risk of transmission in some circumstances. Face coverings are not intended to help the wearer but to protect against inadvertent transmission of the disease to others if you have it asymptomatically.
Public spaces: people can now also spend time outdoors subject to: not meeting up with any more than one person from outside your household; continued compliance with social distancing guidelines to remain 2 metres (6ft) away from people outside your household; good hand hygiene, particularly with respect to shared surfaces; and those responsible for public places being able to put appropriate measures in place to follow the new COVID-
3. Outside Home: Near the end of the main document, “Annex A: Staying Safe Outside your Home”, reiterates the government’s advice:
keep your distance from people outside your household
keep your hands and face as clean as possible
work from home if you can
avoid being face to face with people if they are outside your household
reduce the number of people you spend time with, in a work setting where you can
if you have to travel to work or school for example think about how and when you travel
wash your clothes regularly
keep indoor places well ventilated
if you can wear a face covering in an enclosed space where social distancing isn't possible and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet. This is most relevant for short periods indoors in crowded areas, for example on public transport or in some shops
you should follow the advice given to you by your employer when at work.
The document, “Our Plan to Rebuild”, is unquestionably a steppingstone in the battle against Covid-
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Tuesday 12th May 2020 – Day 50: Looking Ahead -
Does it seem like seven weeks have passed of this new way of living? I guess answers will be varied depending on the day. I have been aware, within myself, within my wife, and listening to others through social media, that days vary and I suspect that most of us have had at least one and, for some, many more days when it has been a struggle. But that should come as no surprise. Apart from the fact that we are living with social distancing, even if it is being lightened up a bit, we are being bombarded, (at least if we are TV or social media users,) with ongoing uncertainties. As we touched on in the last article, ongoing inner struggles about the reality of this situation and how much “I can get away with”, abound.
Those uncertainties include exactly what are the symptoms of the virus we should be watching out for. The graphic on the left comes courtesy of the Times on Saturday and leaves us realising that symptoms vary enormously in nature and in intensity. Moreover just one or two of those symptoms may have totally different causes and have nothing to do with the virus. Having thrashed the garden the other day meant that the next day some muscles ached and I felt fatigued. That was not the virus, and the absence of those things the next day confirmed it.
So, not wanting to be depressing near the beginning of the week, let’s not go through, yet again, all the other various imponderables but just accept that their presence looks like they will be a feature or a characteristic of life for quite some while to come. Why talk about them? Two reasons: first, they are a reality of life and it is pointless escapism to pretend otherwise and, second, it reminds us that one of the key aspects of the coming weeks and months, regardless of the state of lockdown, is to work on and maintain good health through exercise that can impact us physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.
Yes, it’s the same old message we’ve been writing about for weeks, but it is also now being emphasised more and more from many other sources. The longer this goes on, the more important this becomes. Sitting around doing nothing is very unhealthy; muscles deteriorate, fat builds up, minds deteriorate and become depressive, and so on. It seems we need to hold life in a balance.
On one side of the scales is the knowledge, information, government and health-
On the other side of the scales is our own activity that works on maintaining good health and a sense of well-
Tomorrow we hope to look at some of the specific things that are being forecast about life post-
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