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pandemic community lock down ramifications


  • locking down social contact events by banning the community from leaving their homes for a number of weeks or months may be necessary to control pandemics but doing so is likely to have many adverse consequences although many of these can be mitigated.
  • such a quarantine process will not only restrict cases of the pandemic but also other infective diseases such as seasonal influenza, croup, bronchiolitis, gastroenteritis and thus presentations of these to EDs can be expected to be much lower

Typical stages of pandemic lockdown

Stage 1

  • warnings against travel
  • increased border control and monitoring
  • quarantine of positive cases and contacts
  • emphasis on hand hygiene

Stage 2

  • limitation of public gatherings to 100 outdoor and 50 indoor
    • banning of spectators at sports and other events
  • closure of camping grounds
  • social distancing for restaurants and cafes
  • strict border controls
  • closure of most non-essential airline travel
  • 14 day self-quarantine after travel from high risk areas

Stage 3

  • limitation of two people together inside or outside of the house and need to keep 1.5m away from each other and at least 4 sq. m space per person in a room - exception to the numbers and distancing are pre-existing members of a household
  • some states may develop a regional model and ban movement of people between regions
  • only allowed out of house for the following reasons:
    • shopping for essentials such as food
    • work or education
    • care reasons
    • local exercise - bushwalking, recreational fishing, going for a drive, etc are all banned to reduce regional spread
    • extenuating circumstances
    • weddings but maximum of 5 attending
    • funerals but maximum of 10 attending
  • further closure of areas where public tend to gather:
    • non-essential shops
    • bars
    • sit down areas in restaurants and cafes
    • beaches
    • outdoor child play areas

Stage 4

  • further closure of areas where public tend to gather:
    • take away food outlets
    • further closure of some non-essential shops such as furniture sales
  • further restriction of uncontrolled contact:
    • home delivery services may be restricted
    • leaving home for exercise or education

Adverse consequences

social isolation

prolonged family contact

  • may increase conflicts and domestic violence

access to essential services and products

  • this is particularly an issue with the elderly and the vulnerable
  • telemedicine may not be adequate for many
  • home delivery of grocery and foods may not be accessible for many

sedentary living with minimal exercise

  • risks:
    • weight gain
    • low back pain and sciatica
    • neck pains and headaches from long periods of computer use or TV watching
    • sarcopenia
    • cardiovascular de-conditioning
    • general aches and pains
    • impaired diabetic control
    • osteoporosis and hypercalcaemia

impact on internet bandwidth

  • telemedicine, teleconferencing from working from home along with much higher levels of video watching all increase of impacting internet bandwidth which then may impact access to essential web sites
pandemic_lockdown.txt · Last modified: 2020/09/12 10:38 by gary1