The outbreak of Coronavirus has affected the world adversely. These bizarre times have their effects locally as well as globally. The world has moved into a new space of, face to virtual interactions and less passive connections using devices. There is a spree to find new ways to connect to the outside environment during times of social distancing. With the virus around, man is forced to change his thinking and behavior to maintain social distancing norms.
The world now needs to sync in with the Covid-19 situation. Every walk of life is impacted and everyone is in the battle for safety. There are new lessons to learn and this is the time to redesign how we live.
So, What Is Social Distancing and Why was it Important?
To keep infections from Coronavirus at bay social distancing must be maintained. There needs to be a 5-6 feet distance between two people while interactions outside the home. This signifies that group gatherings and crowded places must be strictly escaped. This will help limit one’s exposure to the virus and keep your near and dears safe too.
Social distancing is the best option to slow the spread of COVID-19. The government decided to go into a complete Lockdown in India from midnight of March 24th to make social distancing more effective. The government requested people to minimize person-to-person contact. As per the expert opinions, social distancing should have been applied as early as possible before the virus started to spread. Europe acted too late and was unable to contain the spread.
Taking into account all of this, social distancing became the absolute necessity of the hour. Social distancing or physical distancing bolsters huge spikes in COVID-19 cases. It was seen that the huge spikes in countries like Italy, Israel, and USA choked health care systems at once and many people lost their lives surrendering to a shortage of necessary treatments. The practice of physical distancing instead slows down the rate of COVID-19 spread giving hospitals a fighting chance and room for necessary supplies and health care.
Related Topics: How 2020 will shape 2021?
Coronavirus virus has taken its toll, claimed 2,117,366 lives by January 2021. The world economies contracted sharply. Yet at the same time, the pandemic exposed many corporates that are swelled with more than sufficient staffing. This led to altered working hours, layoffs, working with lesser salaries etc.
The travel model has transformed and people no longer will travel in the same frequency and vacations will be redefined. Business travelers are also using remote conferencing options to travel. The restaurants offer one seat at one table. All of this is the indicator of the New World Order that focuses more on a Human-Centered Economy.
Banking is going remote, redesign of public spaces, digital transformation has gathered momentum like never before in history. Corporates are compelled to respond back at a much faster pace to scale and meet the demands of a scattered workforce.
Even when the restrictions are lifted, social distance policies, remote work options, 12-hour workday, disinfection, stricter ventilation standards, cell phone sensor apps for employee’s safety are all here to stay. At least in the medium term the use of face masks, temperature checks will be prevalent.
Having limited access to employees makes way to an environment where output outweighs input. So the companies might also need to validate that they are ready and flexible to adapt to new mindsets.
The New World Order after Pandemic
The social and economic disruptions post-pandemic has imparted many lessons to the human race. Everyone is learning to adapt to the newly emerging systems and processes. Everyone is fighting the COVID-19 battle and stay protected from the disease while trying to maintain their livelihoods.
This is a fight for both lives and livelihoods. The globe is facing uncertainty, distress, and fear for life. There is loss of life, economic slowdown, mass panic, need to adapt to new models; all at the same time. This churn, re-structured priorities and work to define a new world order.
World Impact and Counter Measures
Countermeasures to cope with the pandemic situation of the world has set a few benchmarks. Agriculture, manufacturing, and other industry businesses have learned how to conduct their operations in the face of the Coronavirus crisis. Singapore followed through an aggressive contact tracing exercise to order people into quarantine. Italy, the country’s whole population of 60 million was quarantined at home except for urgent work reasons. Schools and universities remained closed for months to avoid large public gatherings. A few major reforms were seen in the following avenues:
The Healthcare system now encourages people to first talk to doctors remotely, by video or phone, if not feeling well. This is a better way to social distancing at healthcare systems. This can be a breakthrough for those patients who traveled from distant places for specialized treatments. There seem to be many such facilities in the future that may provide comfort with this kind of permanent healthcare system.
Online teleconsultations are a new thing in India and will throw open opportunities for entrepreneurs. With remote back-end operations, the new systems will be able to create more jobs.
Extra 5G bandwidth was provided across the state of Kerala with the expectation of more people to work and learn online when the pandemic struck. Most of the countries resorted to remote classes for education because schools needed to close down their operations temporarily. This might lead to the opening up of the online learning arena as more of the population is now familiar with the Online Education system and its benefits.
In a few parts of the world, robots were introduced to take up farm works. After Covid-19 hit the world and physical distancing was called for and robots gained more attention. Furthermore, 5G can enable many more improvements in the value chain in the form of precision farming, smart irrigation, and crop monitoring, etc. This technology is all set to expand and prove beneficial to farmers.
Also Read: The Impact of Covid-19 on the Economy of India
2020 witnessed a tremendous change in the way people go out, socialize and work. A major shift emerged and will be seen in the workplaces of the future. The work areas are now evolving and shifting to fit in with the new ideas, technologies, and arrangements. Employees kept connected with their work through the ‘Workfrom Home’ option.
This was a tool used to limit gatherings in offices. Internal events were held by leveraging technologies. Tele-Presence and Video Conferencing tools were big rescuers. A few of the companies that have facilitated work from home for their employees may want to continue doing so for the cost benefits and other utilities.
Virtual buying has seen the strongest spur during 2020. Virtual trial rooms and video-based sales calling techniques are likely to grow further. The food and beverages industry is now working towards improvements in pick-ups of online orders. Brands are performing research in order to give the flexibility to interact with the customers. Contact-less shopping and home deliveries are the norms. There will be great changes in the way people have been shopping in malls or high streets.
The Virtual Classroom
The need for digital advancements in the education sector has widened. The partnerships in the telecommunications sector and the education systems to provide free Wi-Fi access have lowered the risk of leaving anyone behind. Better access to technology and collaborations will set up a base for remote education and help students worldwide.
Healing of the Planet
All this while, when people were struggling to adapt to this new world, our planet got some time to heal. Air quality and water quality improved everywhere in the world. This pandemic will redefine how we live.
To Sum Up
Man is a social creature. We live in families and groups, so the world devoid of interactions will have huge voids. Social distancing has given us many gems but has also received problems like mental anxiety in return. There are incidences of loneliness, joblessness and anxieties also. There are dangers of social rejection and the loss of sense of community.
The changes in the world will have effects on social distancing measures for a sustained period of time. This will be a habit among the population and maybe customary in society. During these surreal times, technology kept us connected. Going forward, social distancing and masks are going to stay. Although the vaccines are in place it will be a long time before a majority of the population is vaccinated. Other lifestyle changes brought about by the pandemic will remain too and everyone will have to learn to live with the virus at least for some time.