Thoughts about a sustainable way forward

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Wear appropriate masks. There seems to be strong evidence that appropriate masks significant reduce transmission if you have the virus. ( If everyone wore masks when out and about then that suggests that transmission would be reduced. Promoting the message – ‘you’re wearing masks to protect/help others’ may also help people feel less self-conscious while wearing them (whilst also giving across the message that if you’re not wearing a mask you are not helping… etc). Employers should be encouraged to provide masks for their workers as part of their social responsibilities. However, it is important that masks for the public should not mean not enough PPE for frontline staff. Public hygiene. Alongside wearing masks, this will need to remain. Shops etc could open if people wear masks and footfall was reduced so that social distancing could still be maintained. It would be good if some shops (and people in general) could understand what 2 m looks like for example. Research 1 – as far as I am aware there hasn’t been a lot of research looking into how the virus transmits itself, i.e. whether it has an aerosol element. I can’t count how many times I have been ‘buzzed’ by runners and cyclists on the pavements and roads who are obviously huffing and puffing a fair bit. I would like to know how safe these people are. Research 2 – the creation of the ‘Independent SAGE’ was really good to see. Having cross sectoral collaboration like this is important. Could a research grouping be set up across Scotland harnessing all the expertise we have in the various fields: public health, immunology, virology, primary care and so on. Could there be dedicated cross -disciplinary COVID research streams that would be funded by the SG to look at coronavirus holistically, i.e. from a person/patient centred perspective? The results from this may also feed into future pandemic planning/situations. Education 1 – it would be good to enhance science education for the public so that they understand some of the science, even at a basic level, i.e. the difference between a bacteria and virus. It would also be good for them to understand that in a fast moving situation like this, science will not have all the answers right now and that opinions and even accepted ‘facts’ will change. There is generally a need for society to be able to cope with complexity and cope with situations where there is no black or white. Education 2 – there should be demonstratable support for pupils from deprived backgrounds so that they are not educationally disadvantaged on their return to the education system.

Why the contribution is important

I think it's important to realise that we are in for the long-haul so what we do needs to be sustainable and also set down the foundations and increase our readiness to deal with fast-moving, complex situations like this one in the future. The world will not become less complex and it is important that society starts to deal with this rather than become tribal and entrenched in simplistic thinking. I am an educator so I will always seek solutions from research and education

by Astropoet on May 07, 2020 at 12:03PM

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