Written by S. Shiva (Sri Lanka Reporter)
When the coronavirus outbreak first started last December, no one took it seriously. Most people just laughed it off, saying that the seasonal flu was several times more serious. When China was forced to completely quarantine Wuhan, even as small infected pockets started popping out all over the map of China and the world, many countries were still laughing at their misfortune. It was only as the people of Iran, Italy and South Korea started falling to the disease left, right and centre that the true horror of COVID-19 started to be seen.
But now it’s too late to simply implement control measures. With people getting infected in droves in a large number of nations, the global battle with the coronavirus has just begun. Regardless of the outcome, it seems highly likely that our lives will undergo a drastic change after this pandemic runs its course. So here are the top 9 changes that will be most likely to occur after COVID-19 finishes its destruction.
There will be a significant reduction to the population in a number of countries
During the past decade or two, Earth has been facing red alert towards the danger of overcrowding. This has been especially severe in industrial nations. The coronavirus has also been especially fatal in crowded regions and places lacking proper medical care as the virus is spreading too fast for control or medical aid.
The landscape of global powers will undergo a drastic change
The speed of the contagion has been a surprise to many of the global powers who felt themselves above having to dealing with what they considered a small speed bump. But the speed bump turned out to be giant ditch that made them upturn their fast-moving countries, causing a drop in their workforce and economies. With the way things seem to be proceeding, unless a cure is found within the next month or so, USA, UK and China will be severely affected. There is a possibility that the governments may collapse, either from coronavirus reaching the heads of state or angry citizens causing an upheaval. Even if the governments manage to keep their powers, they will not be able to get back to the same level as before COVID-19 in the short term. There will also be many changes in the heads of governments
The prices of food, toiletries, and basic medication will go up, while the prices of non-essential items will fall.
With people buying out stocks of food, toiletries and basic medication during this pandemic, there will be a severe lack. As the industrial workforce and farmers become unable to attend to their work due to falling sick, or having to enter enforced quarantine – along with lacking shipping facilities; the swiftly declining stocks will not be able to be replenished anytime soon. Due to the huge demand with very little supply, the prices for these essentials will rise in an attempt to control the market and maximize profits. As this happens, people will have less money for non-essential items – forcing them to lower their prices in an attempt to encourage people to buy.
The Medical industry will experience an exponential growth
Even after the outbreak ends, the fear in the hearts of the people will not leave. Even the slightest itch in the throat may have a person running to the hospital in fear. There will also be a great demand for doctors-on-call. Of course, there will be a severe lack of doctors and other medical personnel on the whole, as numerous qualified medical personnel might get fatally infected at the front-line of the coronavirus pandemic. There will be a great boom in the number of hospitals in all countries.
There will be an increase in Virtual / Telecommuting jobs
Many people will develop a fear of going out, or will avoid non-essential travel. There will be a greater demand for Telecommuting jobs, and countries that do not have the necessary labour policy adaptations for this will be forced to make the necessary changes in their policies.
We will see many travel agencies, tourism agencies, airline companies, hotels and restaurants going bankrupt
Travel, whether local or international, will be the last thing that most people would want to do during or shortly after this contagion. This will result in many travel related businesses or eateries finding themselves unable to meet ends. This lull may continue for over half an year to one year, at least. Unless these business enterprises find a different sector to sustain themselves with, they will probably find themselves going bankrupt within an year or two.
The Chinese may face hostility and racial discrimination for decades
As COVID-19 initially started in China, the Chinese and all other races with Asian will start to be viewed as disease bringers and criminals by the general public of other countries. They will face much contempt, hate and unreasonable discrimination. Any Chinese restaurants or businesses will be viewed with suspicion and some more aggressive people may even outright attack them. Such behavior might continue for decades, such that the new generations may not even know why they are supposed to hate the Chinese.
The visa regulations and airport arrival regulations will change for many countries
The uncontrollable spread of the coronavirus to almost all the countries of the world has given all of us an unforgettable lesson. New airport regulations and visa regulations for most countries will include stringent checks for all sorts of infection diseases.
There will be almost no concerts, matches or large rallies in the near future
Everybody will be too scared of getting coronavirus through any large-scale meet-up, regardless of country. Hence all entertainment and formal events will get cancelled or postponed until further notice. Hence, entertainers, event planners and organizers, and event management companies will find themselves with no more business.
These changes are not an exhaustive list of what might occur. But these are key ones that will change life around the world. But change is constant regardless of the situation, and should be welcomed. So let us keep our spirits high and get ready to face COVID-19.