Living in the New Normal World

May 8, 2020

COVID-19 is an infectious disease which started in Wuhan, China in December 2019. The first reported case in the Philippines was last January 30, 2020 with a 38-year old Chinese woman. Since then, the number of people infected increased daily which pushed President Duterte to put the entire Luzon, including other provinces, under Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) in March 2020. 

Admit it, every year most companies, schools and offices are doing fire and earthquake drills nationwide but nobody saw a pandemic coming. No one is prepared for this. As the lawmakers filed a bill on new normal last April 2020 that would establish preventive measures such as physical distancing in public areas and wearing of masks when ECQ is lifted and businesses start to resume, the questions still remain...are we ready to go out and take the risks? 

Due to this deadly coronavirus, the public has become aware of having a healthy lifestyle and practicing proper hygiene. Children from 0 to 19 and adults from 60 and above are discouraged to go out as they are more susceptible to acquiring COVID-19. Although young adults have stronger immune systems, they can be carriers of the disease and transmit it to their loved ones while senior citizens are at higher risks due to their pre-existing conditions. 

Here are the things that you need to do after the Enhanced Community Quarantine to protect yourself and your loved ones. 

1. Observe social distancing - A physical distance of 1 meter will be implemented while in public places, including public transportation This also means that office meetings have to be kept to at least 4 attendees to ensure that there is enough distance among each other. 

Shoppers are advised to do online shopping or will be given window hours to visit the malls to run some errands; churches will hold masses or services on online; enrollment for the next school year is accomplished using online applications; workers are encouraged to work remotely while meetings should be scheduled virtually. 

2. Always wear masks - As the government warns the public about the 2nd and 3rd wave of COVID-19 spread, wearing a mask is strictly implemented as soon as you step out of your home. The use of masks is not just to protect yourself from getting infected, this is also to prevent you from spreading the virus in case you are asymptomatic. 

3. Frequent hand washing - Hand washing will now be part of our routine and so is the avoidance of touching your face, mouth nose and even hand shaking or any forms of physical contact with another person. We now have to get used to formal greetings through a simple wave, nod or Namaste hand prayer. 

4. Apply alcohol or sanitizers - Since proper hand washing with soap and water won’t be always accessible especially when you’re outdoors, it is now mandatory to always have a bottle of alcohol and sanitizers to ensure that you are always ready to disinfect your hands whenever necessary. 

It is also encouraged to sanitize and properly wash every item before you touch it or before you bring it inside your homes. Grocery items, fruits and vegetables, your car keys and even your money. 

5. Get financial protection - In this time of crisis, it’s essential to have a backup that would support you financially when things do not go as planned. Remember illnesses especially this COVID-19 virus may hit anyone. Thus it is important that you are covered with financial protection for any inevitable circumstances. 

Paramount Direct offers an affordable health insurance plan that provides daily cash assistance during hospital confinements - HealthCare Cash Plan. It covers you, your spouse or whole family against injuries, illnesses including COVID-19. 

The HealthCare Cash Plan is especially designed for ages 20 to 50 years old. It provides you with Daily Cash Benefit of up to P4,000, Daily ICU Benefit of up to P4,000, Daily Dread Disease Benefit of up to P8,000, Long-term Confinement and Surgical Benefits of up to P80,000 each. Now you can protect your finances and family from emergencies. Premiums starting at P239* for Individual, P478** for couples and P731*** for family. Apply online at

Let us do our part and never take this lightly. Unless there is an available vaccine and cure for this disease, no one can be complacent about the situation but this should not stop us from moving forward. Gear up, do proper personal hygiene and cleaning habits and safe social interactions as we embrace this whole new normal world and prevent future pandemic. 

 * based on insurance age of 20 and Individual Plan 500 
 ** based on insurance age of 20 and Couple Plan 500 
*** based on insurance age of 20 and Family Plan 500