Washing your hands frequently when you’re out and about is one of the ways you should be protecting yourself from COVID-19. (file photo)

Now is not the time to slack off on virus prevention

Now is not the time to be less careful, now is the time to be more careful.

With more and more things opening up after months of shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s easy to relax as things around us start to feel more normal. There are far more vehicles on the roads again, and people are out in our communities walking down the streets, sometimes stopping to chat with friends. Our favourite stores are open and we can sit down at a restaurant for a meal (though it will likely be outdoors).

The sun is shining and the birds are singing.

RELATED: Study suggests 8 times more people in B.C. infected with virus than confirmed

These things are all wonderful to see once more and are doing good things for our collective mental health. But it makes it all too easy to forget that the pandemic isn’t over yet. There are new cases still being reported daily, though the numbers are far smaller than they used to be, at least in Canada, and especially in B.C. New cases on Vancouver Island in the last two months number in the single digits.

But it’s dangerous for us to get complacent.

Worldwide, the pandemic is worsening. Numbers in other countries are skyrocketing, including in the U.S., our nearest neighbour. Therein lies a cautionary tale about what can happen when we don’t take the precautions we should all still be following. These include physical distancing of two metres (six feet) from all those outside your now expanded bubble; frequent handwashing if you’ve been out in public places; use of hand sanitizer if you can’t wash with soap and water; keeping your hands away from your face; and wearing a mask if you are in close proximity to others, especially indoors.

You must still stay at home if you feel in any way unwell, and strictly observe quarantine if you are coming home from a trip outside our borders.

With more people out and about our chances of catching or spreading COVID-19 have again risen, so it is more important now to observe the preventive measures we’ve adopted than ever. We do not want to find ourselves in a situation where we must lock down again because our infection rates threaten our safety and ability to provide health care.

It can happen painfully easily, with just one infected individual, who may not even know they’re sick, having the ability to spread the virus far, fast and wide if we are cavalier about personal protective measures.

RELATED: District of Tofino encourages residents to wear masks

We are told a second wave of the infection is still likely. We will be much less hard hit if we can stay vigilant, even as we enjoy more normalcy.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

CoronavirusEditorials

Just Posted

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

Air ambulance called to possible drowning near Duncan

Status of patient unknown after incident at Quamichan Lake

COVID- 19: Ucluelet encourages visitors and residents to mask up

“Put your ego aside, this is what needs to be done,” said Ucluelet mayor Mayco Noel.

Flying hot dog strikes Saanich pedestrian

Police called to 4200-block of Quadra Street for hot dog incident

View Royal fire chief calls for realistic solutions to ‘mess’ at Thetis Lake

Emergency crews harassed while extinguishing brush fire, rescuing drunk 15-year-old during long weekend calls

B.C. doctors, dentists call on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

Maple Bay man rushed to hospital after being trapped under car

BC Ambulance and Maple Bay Fire Department attend scene on Wednesday morning

Island Health warning of spike in overdoses in Nanaimo area

Substance users advised to visit overdose prevention site on Wesley Street in Nanaimo

Most Read