Mitigation of quarantine regime does not mean pandemic is over
It is necessary not to create conditions again for the strict quarantine regime
The quarantine regime will be further mitigated gradually, Assistant to the president of Azerbaijan, Head of the Department of Economic Issues and Innovative Development Policy of the Presidential Administration of the Republic of Azerbaijan Shahmar Movsumov said. Movsumov made the remark in Baku during the briefing of the Operational Headquarters under the Azerbaijani Cabinet of Ministers on July 20.
The assistant to the president stressed that the strict quarantine regime was extended till August 5. "The quarantine regime is expected to be mitigated after August 5,” Movsumov said. "We will gradually resume activity in all spheres, but it is necessary not to create conditions again for the strict quarantine regime."
The end and further mitigating of the strict quarantine regime is good news. However, we have seen in previous mitigating periods that people consider this situation as the end of the pandemic and do not take precautions to protect against the virus. However, it does not mean the end of the coronavirus. The fact that there were crowds in cafes and people didn’t use masks put us back in strict quarantine.
Also, the quarantine regime remains in force in many countries around the world. Some even are quarantined for the second time, and Azerbaijan is one of them. Re-infection is also reported in countries such as Japan and Hong Kong. Israel has also opened its beaches and is quarantined due to the increase in infection.
So, what awaits us?
MP Elman Nasirov said that the re-tightening was due to people's misjudgment of the softening process. "Depending on the situation, the process of tightening and mitigating the quarantine regime is interchangeable. The main factor influencing this replacement is that when the number of infections begins to exceed the number of those who recover and the percentage of excess sharply increases, tightening measures are automatically initiated, and vice versa, mitigation measures are started. We have witnessed these cases. I think that the re-tightening was the result of people misjudging the softening process. First of all, there are 3 simple principles: Wear a mask, keep a social distance and use disinfectants. Therefore, first of all, you need to be very responsible. We already have experience. We have experienced both a strict quarantine and a mitigation phase. We must learn from this as we see the dire consequences of carelessness in the mitigation process,” he noted.
The MP believes that if there is a transition to the mitigating of the quarantine regime, then it is necessary to adhere more strictly to the existing requirements in this area so as not to return to the strict regime. "The only way not to return to the tight quarantine regime is for people to comply with the relevant requirements. Once the quarantine regime mitigated, the infection cases increased sharply. We must not repeat this mistake. If we do not draw conclusions from this, we will have to switch to a strict quarantine regime again," he said.
Infectious disease specialist Vugar Javadzade said that if the number of patients increases during the mitigating period, the transition to strict quarantine is inevitable. "People should take a responsible approach to this issue, even after the abolition of strict quarantine, and wear masks. Strict quarantine should be gradually relaxed. The mistake people make is that when there is a mitigation, they think the pandemic is over. But the virus is still in our country and we have not overcome it," he said.
Javadzade stressed that people do not want to follow the rules. "When coronavirus infection began, strict quarantine regime was applied,” he added. "However, after the mitigating of the quarantine regime, the population does not want to follow the rules at all. I ask the population to follow all the hygienic standards. First of all, masks must be used when entering large and small markets, malls, other shopping centers, public catering establishments. People should avoid public gatherings, keep social distance. The mitigation of the quarantine regime does not mean that the virus is completely gone and there can be no infection. The probability of infection is high. The only reason for this is people. All measures taken by the state are for the health of the population.”
According to Doctor Ugur Agamaliyev, it is too early to talk about mitigating of the strict quarantine regime in the current situation. "Because the number of newly infected patients in Azerbaijan is still high. In addition, about 15 percent of patients have asymptomatic disease. Unfortunately, as in other countries, COVID-19 is not taken seriously in our country and is considered by some people as part of some policy. Therefore, if this part of the society and people who are asymptomatic do not follow the rules even after the quarantine regime is mitigated, it means more infection cases. For this reason, people must be very careful even after the mitigation, it means that the fate of the country depends on them," he noted.