Stay calm and wash your hands

Practising good hygiene makes more sense than bulk buying

Shoppers at Costco in Richmond on March 7, 2020. Photo by Rui Yang Xu
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By Rui Yang Xu

Despite cases of COVID-19 reaching double digits in British Columbia recently, panic buying is unjustified.

While most believe that the bulk buying of everyday products like toilet paper is due to fears of an incoming lockdown in parts of China, like Wuhan, there are other considerations that people should think about.

The B.C government is providing a strong, almost daily public update and action plan on the virus situation from increasing the number of testing sites, businesses and other health facilities. So, the fear of a total lockdown of borders, lockdown of public transit or a scenario where the virus spreads out of control is definitely unwarranted.

However, many haven’t considered a more likely and realistic fear which is that someone gets the virus and needs to quarantine themselves for two weeks. In such a situation, the lack of proper planning and resources would be a legitimately terrifying situation.  Having two weeks-worth of necessities in advance would be a great idea.

But instead of focusing on what might happen, the public should be focusing harder on preventing the potential of being infected in the first place. From constantly washing your hands or using hand sanitizer to resisting the desire to touch your face, making sure you practise good hygiene to prevent being potentially infected is important.

Through good hygiene practises, the need for panic buying in bulk would become unnecessary. Then, those who are actually in need of resources, like masks, are able to purchase what they need. This also erases the fear of missing out from other buyers who are simply worried about not being able to buy what they need.

At the end of the day, the public will need to work together to ensure our day-to-day lives are still normal. That means helping educate others on COVID-19 while avoiding false information from various social media like Wechat.

Most importantly, people need to avoid the desire to panic buy in bulk and to simply practise better hygiene.

 

 

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