The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented crisis that is impacting millions across the globe. In this article, we are interviewing an individual that spent two weeks living in the same property, with an infected person. For the purpose of this article, the name of the interviewee shall not be divulged to maintain anonymity.
1) What was your reaction when you were told that you had to quarantine with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?
For most of the pandemic I have been careful, but I always had this belief that it was going to be fine and that it wouldn’t affect me, but someone else instead. When I realised that my friend was positive, it all became suddenly very real.
2) What measures did you take to limit exposure?
We were all being careful, but after he tested positive, we became even more cautious. We started wearing masks all day when leaving our room, avoiding each other as much as possible, and spending most of the time in our separate rooms, leaving just to make lunch at different times and using hand sanitisers whenever possible.
3) Did you use the same bathroom as the infected person?
Luckily no, we have more than one bathroom. Usually, we would share them, however, we opted to assign one to our friend, whilst we used the other.
4) Did you feel any of the symptoms during the period you were quarantined?
Luckily no, even though we spent time together and hanged out often before our friend showed any sign of COVID-19. When he got ill and suspected the virus might have been the cause, he immediately closed himself in his room until he received the test results.
5) Were the visits made by the health officials regular?
I believe that they came once, they remained outside and wanted to check if we were all at home. After that, our friend received daily phone calls from doctors to monitor his symptoms and health condition. Luckily he didn’t get sick enough to be hospitalised and was able to stay at home with us.
6) What do you think about the job performed by the health officials?
I can understand that it might be difficult to trust a system where you don’t get to see the gears in action, but we need to believe in the people risking their own safety and lives to help everyone else. Most importantly, we have to trust the experts guiding us through this pandemic. Last time I checked; Facebook is no doctor. Just because you haven’t had any experience with COVID-19 yet, it does not mean that it is not dangerous to you or any other member of your family, especially for the most vulnerable ones.
7) What is your perception about the symptoms of COVID-19?
We have to be careful. Symptoms may show up or, just like most of my Tinder dates, may not show up at all. In both cases, that ends up with a man, in his thirties, sitting alone in a dark and cold room, regretting his life choices.
8) Do you think that COVID-19 is similar to a common cold or influenza?
COVID-19 is as close to a cold or influenza as Scientology is to real science. It is more dangerous and we are less prepared to handle it.
9) For how long did you stay in quarantine?
For two weeks, or enough to make me realise how much I missed having human interactions to the point that, one evening, my own reflection in our hallway mirror scared me.
10) How did you manage quarantine?
I believe we all managed fine. We were careful and avoided getting infected. It was boring and stressful after a long time, but it is a small price to pay for helping each other stay safe.
11) What were your biggest concerns?
My friend’s health and getting sick myself. I had researched before how the virus works, how it affects our body and the dangers surrounding it. Knowing this helped me understand how important remaining safe was, for my own health and of those around me.
12) Do you think that the media has over-inflated COVID-19?
I don’t watch much television, so I don’t know how regularly news channels cover this disease. I have a few news sources which I trust. Facebook isn’t one and I believe that more could have been done. Explaining how the disease works in the first place helped me realise that COVID-19 is absolutely not a common flu. There is a pandemic going on, death rates are difficult to establish, but we knew since the beginning that it is much more contagious and dangerous than the average seasonal flu.
13) Do you plan on taking the vaccine once it is available?
When enough tests are done to make sure that the vaccines are safe. As we are seeing now, rushing to get one is not a good idea as complications are cropping up. Usually it takes years for a vaccine to be made and produced and we are doing it in less than half that time. I will definitely get one. COVID-19 isn’t going anywhere. It is a disease that we will have to live with from now on and maybe in the future, just like Polio, Tetanus or Rubella, it will disappear, making people wonder why we need vaccines in a hundred years.