Preparing for the next pandemic following COVID-19 by Hani Zeini

After the disaster led by COVID-19, both world leaders and public health organizations stress the need to stay ready for the next wave of pandemics that can sweep the world. Harvard Business Review suggests that there can be more of them coming our way, which can last for weeks to months. So everyone and their families should prepare. It is suggested to avoid needless travels and errands. This can reduce your exposure to the virus as you interact with less people. It has to be an integral part of your planning. Along with this, you can do other things also to ensure safety at home.

Hani Zeini: Things to do for protection from other pandemics

Treat illness or injury at home

When COVID-19 occurred in the US, doctors and nurses didn’t have PPEs like gowns and masks to safely attend to their patients. Many of them left their posts to protect themselves and their families. When the number of healthcare workers are reduced, patients with heart attacks or victims of car accident incidents have to suffer. Similarly, drug supplies of sedatives and antimicrobials can fall short. Any of these situations are not unpredictable during such widespread health emergencies. Hence, stocking up on necessary supplies, such as hand sanitizers and bleach, can keep the virus’s risk at bay. Besides, keep some pain relievers, vitamins, antidiarrheal medicine, and cough and cold medicines handy.

Since it can cost you a significant amount when you buy in large quantities, wait for coupons and sale offers to fill your box with over-the-counter medication. A well-equipped first-aid kit should also be ready.

Have a separate sick room

Whether it is COVID-19 or some other future pandemic, you need to have a dedicated sick room and bathroom, which nobody else should use. So, choose a space that can easily convert into one. If it doesn’t have a door, place a plastic curtain to create the partition. If someone is ill, you can keep them in that room. Make sure to maintain this place well. Plus, everyone should wear face masks in the house if someone seems to have fallen ill.

Collect food, water, and other supplies

Hani Zeini suggests having household supplies for two weeks or even a month can be useful. Usually, one person consumes one gallon of water for drinking and hygiene purposes per day. So if your pantry is adequately large, you would not have to visit your local grocery store often, which means your exposure to the virus risks will also be lower. It can also save you from issues caused by a supply shortage, which was prevalent in the initial months of the virus outbreak.

You can store some items for a long time, including flour, pasta, dried lentils, beans or peas, peanut butter, beverages (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, etc.), frozen fruits and veggies, instant soups, and others. Similarly, you would want to have a stock of hand soaps, toilet papers, garbage bags, bleach, diapers, and so on.

In the end, whatever you do, your ultimate aim has to focus on mitigating the risk of severe health conditions arising from COVID-19 or any other form of a virus.

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