How to Prevent and Address Social Stigma Associated With COVID-19

September 19, 2020

Social stigma is a discrimation against a person or group of people commonly related to various factors, including health. The current pandemic has provoked social stigma against those who are suffering from COVID-19, displaying symptoms of the virus, had close contact with a positive patient or even those who have already recovered. These people are being labelled, avoided by their peers, threatened and treated differently. Thus, this kind of treatment may have serious negative effects on them and is actually harmful, not just to people who are infected but for everyone. 

It’s true how we are so paranoid about getting sick these days. With a little cough and trouble breathing, we suspect right away that it could mean COVID19 even if it’s just a simple allergy or common colds. Trying to put ourselves in a COVID-19 patient’s shoes could make us understand their fear, mental stress and the roller coaster of emotions they’re feeling. 

Let’s not treat those who suffer from the coronavirus differently because to begin with, they did not want to get infected, nobody does . Here’s what we can do to reduce the social stigma associated with COVID-19: 

Know the facts. If your neighbors talk about a certain family or person who is positive of COVID-19 in your community, don’t add fuel to the fire. Instead, speak accurately about the facts of this disease based on reputable and reliable sources. Spreading rumors may cause fear and panic. Build trust and emphasize that most people who acquired the virus have recovered and they can actually help other patients to recover faster by donating plasma. In fact, the death rate in the Philippines is not as bad as in other countries. According to the Department of Health, our country is getting a downward trend in the mortality rate which is actually a good sign since there is no cure yet for the said virus. 

Focus on the truth, read up and educate others about the things they need to do to stay safe. 

Be responsible. Make sure to promote encouragement and hope. Talk positively about the effectiveness of protecting oneself such as maintaining a 2-meter distance; wearing a face shield and face mask; washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water; using 70% alcohol and disinfectants to clean the exposed surfaces; maintaining a clean environment; taking your supplements and; staying fit and healthy. 

Be aware of the symptoms so you can do a self-check and isolate yourself, at once, in order to protect others as well. Early screening, testing and treatment are the best ways to arrest the spread of the new coronavirus. 

Read more: Your Defense Against COVID-19 

Do your part. Each of us has a key role to play in preventing social stigma, so we have to choose our words carefully and act accordingly. Show empathy and give support to our friends and family, who are suffering from the virus or even just being suspected of having it, and to the frontliners on their fight against COVID-19. Going through such tough times, faced with physical, mental, emotional and financial challenges, isn’t easy. 

You are not alone. Paramount Direct is one with you in this battle against COVID-19. We offer affordable health and life insurance products that cover COVID-19 cases to ease your financial burden and provide peace of mind during this pandemic. Our goal is to help you be one step ahead towards a secured future. 

Those people who have been infected with the virus and their family have suffered enough already, treating them differently is adding up to their problems. Treat them how you want to be treated when you or your loved one gets infected. This is not the time to hate or judge people. Always spread kindness and love and let’s help each other go through this trying times unscathed, mentally, emotionally and physically. 

Let’s fight COVID-19! #TogetherAgainstCOVID19