Life after COVID-19: Get Ready for a Post-Pandemic Future
The world as we knew it was broken. We all made the necessary changes and now we are slowly but surely adapting to the new normal. After any major event in history, there may be a lot of anxiety and uncertainty about what could be expected. Even though the world is still adapting, here are a few ways we see the post-pandemic future.
Pre-pandemic many companies were apprehensive to work remotely. With the COVID-19 obliging many companies to do so, more companies discovered the advantages of remote work. The biggest is a reduction in costs. The first cost that comes to mind is office space rental. But if you think about your grocery bill. By how much did it increase paying for your milk, tea, and coffee. Collectively companies are saving fortunes by only having those who need to be in an office space present and the rest working remotely.
Our hygiene habits have improved drastically. From a young age, you were probably taught to sing the happy birthday song while washing your hands. Or you have seen the posters on how to wash your hands for at least 30 seconds. Nowadays we see videos of babies barely walking trying to constantly sanitise their hands with anything that resembles a dispenser. These habits have now been ingrained and we are more than likely to pass them on for many generations.
Masks are most probably here to stay. As there are still many unknowns about the virus. There are different variants and in some cases, infections still occur even if you have been vaccinated. Even when masks are no longer mandatory people are highly likely to keep wearing them for personal preference.
The largest concern during the pandemic was how quickly it spread. In terms of prevention, many countries are talking about an immunity passport. The immunity passport is a document that states that you are immune to the virus. Even though they may become a requirement to travel to a different country. It is not an ordinary passport that you will need to travel out of the country. Some countries are considering making these mandatory to go to restaurants or visit the movie theatre.
It seems like most countries have made proof of vaccination mandatory to enter the border. Some countries have already implemented a rapid testing system. It means that before traveling they can do the test and get the result immediately.
There is also the ongoing debate regarding the vaccine being mandatory for employment.
But it is not all bad. Many positives will be a part of our new normal too. The majority of these were the digital advances that quickly took place during the lockdown period.
The healthcare system went digital. You can now have a doctor’s consultation over the phone or video call. There are a variety of ready-made options that allow easier access to patients. It was not only the personal aspects that changed but the equipment too. There have also been enhancements in medical equipment to make it portable and accessible to everyone. These are devices such as ECG monitors, digital stethoscopes, and otoscopes just to name a few. These devices no longer need to be operated by a health care practitioner. They are digitised to record the results.
The pandemic had a huge impact on mental health and physical fitness. Fitbit recorded 25% steps worldwide during the lockdown. But applications soon came to the rescue. At-home workouts became extremely popular. Online fitness has boomed. There are hundreds of fitness applications to choose from. Some offer free workouts and others are based on subscriptions. During the height of the pandemic, we also saw multiple Facebook and Instagram virtual classes. As people can exercise at home with more convenience. Fewer people are signing up to go to the gym. But the good news is people are more active than before.
The pandemic had a severe effect on many people’s mental health. The digital space responded to the need rapidly creating free WhatsApp chats as well as a variety of mental health applications. The applications are designed to help you relieve stress through meditation and other techniques. There has been a big focus on mental health and with the access to information at our fingertips more people are making it a priority.
Last but not least, online shopping. Online shopping has been around for a very long time. Some of us may have used it a lot, while others not as much. During the pandemic, there was an increase in the grocery delivery applications available. Stores that did not have an online website quickly created one or joined a platform where their goods could be sold.
The pandemic showed us we are more creative and adaptable than we possibly had thought. There are still many other factors that may change and become our new normal. The key is to embrace the change and enjoy the ride.