Has COVID-19 permanently changed the world?

Has COVID-19 permanently changed the world?

Many countries around the world are now starting to transition to a post-Covid-19 world. Events are slowly being held in-person, travel is beginning again and, in many cities, bars and restaurants are once again full.

However, the Covid-19 pandemic is far from over as vaccine rates are beginning to plateau and many millions of people around the world do not have access to vaccines. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed our world in a series of very significant ways, and it appears likely that at least some of those changes are here to stay for the foreseeable future.

New perspectives on community, life, and the individual in society

The Covid-19 lockdown gave many people and communities around the world a moment to stop, reflect, and consider. Suddenly we were all stuck at home and had very little to distract us – we were brought back to the basics.

During the lockdown, many people and communities came together in order to support the most vulnerable members of the community. Although the lockdown has eased in many places around the world, the close connections built and developed over the course of the pandemic have remained – and now many communities are stronger than ever.

Increased health measures

Another aspect of our daily lives which Covid-19 has potentially permanently altered is the presence of increased health and safety measures. It is likely that most of us who lived through the last eighteen months will continue to take additional precautions such as using hand sanitiser whenever possible and using masks.

However, it is also likely that there will be a continued need for regulated Covid-19 testing. Whether the testing is required to travel, work in a certain environment, or attend a specific event, it is likely that, for the foreseeable future, there will be a need for frequent Covid-19 testing. Thankfully there are now providers offering competitively priced, efficient COVID-19 PCR test services.

It never hurts to be cautious and to take additional precautions, and this is particularly true for the immunocompromised and the elderly. Demographics of the population who are more at risk of contracting Covid-19 will likely need to continue taking precautions against getting sick.

The Global South and Covid-19

The pandemic has increased the disparity between the Global South and the Global North and highlighted the differences between the regions. As millions of people in the Global South are left without access to vaccines or proper healthcare, American states are trying to induce their citizens to get the vaccine with offers of lottery winnings, giveaways, and presents. Also, intellectual property restrictions remain tight on vaccines whose development was publicly funded, thus limiting vaccine access for the poorest people in the world.

As climate change ramps up, it appears likely that the disparity between the Global South and North will only continue to worsen. An inclusive, international approach to both Covid-19 and climate change is needed in order to effectively protect the world for the coming generations.