Covid-19 has dramatically changed the way we live in a very short space of time. The immediate impact of Covid-19 has resulted in travel restrictions, self-isolation, and an economic downturn. But what will the long-term consequences of Covid-19 be?
The good news with Covid-19 is that it’s beatable. The struggle so far has been down to the virus being so new. But science is discovering more and more about Covid-19 every day. However, it’s crucial that we don’t stay fixated purely on the immediate story. The virus has had wide-reaching effects and these are likely to echo into the future. Therefore, it’s important that we start to consider these future consequences now. It’s the best way to prepare for the future. And the major fallout that we can expect to see will be:
The economy has already taken a major knock from Covid-19 and matters are set to get significantly worse. Many industries have already ground to a halt with only essential businesses remaining open. As a result, unemployment has started to rise almost as sharply as revenues have fallen. The cumulative effect of these negative financial hits is predicted to lead to a global recession. And, making matters worse, this is likely to be managed with austerity measures.
In one respect, improvements in personal hygiene will become a defining legacy of Covid-19. The importance of handwashing, for example, has never been underlined as boldly as it has in 2020. However, there are also a number of negative effects on health to contend with. There has been a sharp increase in anxiety levels and obsessive behaviors, such as cleaning, are becoming the norm. Reversing these behaviors cannot be achieved overnight and treating these conditions will take significant time and effort.
Covid-19 has demonstrated that even healthcare systems in the most developed countries have struggled to deal with a pandemic. Naturally, this provides plenty to evaluate and consider for the future. A recurring theme regarding healthcare during the Covid-19 outbreak has been PPE shortages. Strategizing better supply chains for all medical equipment will, naturally, be a major priority for all governments and healthcare providers going forwards.
Humans thrive upon social interactions, but the infectious nature of Covid-19 has radically changed this dynamic. And for children, in particular, there are concerns it will hinder their social development. It’s essential that children and teenagers mix with their peers to develop their interpersonal skills. But this, at least in physical terms, is no longer possible. The consequence of this scenario is that a generation of children may have difficulty in forming fully-functional relationships.
We are living in times that were unimaginable just a few months ago. Dealing with the pandemic has been incredibly difficult, but the signs are that society is getting there. Nonetheless, defeating the spread of Covid-19 is only the first hurdle we need to clear. The after-effects of the pandemic will continue to manifest themselves in our daily lives for years to come, in fact, the world economy is said not to get back on its tracks until at least late 2024. And that’s why it’s vital than we start considering the future consequences as soon as possible.
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