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Covid-19: Kiasu or kiasi? Ho Ching says use windcheater or umbrella as DIY mask

The Independent logo The Independent 7/4/2020 Hana O
Ho Ching in a red jacket standing in front of a body of water © The Independent Singapore

Singapore – In response to an exponential phenomenon, Ho Ching took to Facebook to urge the public in practising sensitivity and social responsibility as the country enters a month of partial lockdown.

On Tuesday (April 7), Facebook power-user Mdm Ho posted a lengthy message on her account advising everyone to aim for unity and resourcefulness amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

There has been an increasing number of criticisms and complaints from members of the online community ever since social media has proven itself to be an effective medium of communication. From hoarding or stockpiling essential goods and panic buying, to the quality or size of the free reusable masks provided by the Government, social media has been actively highlighting opinions on such issues.

“Folks, don’t scold each other or get angry with each other. Don’t go blaming this or that. Don’t be a back seat driver too,” began Mdm Ho in her post. Instead, “when there is no fish, we make do with prawns,” she added.

Sticking to her metaphor, Mdm Ho noted that if there was one fish left or a limited supply of any necessity, “we give it to the ones putting themselves most at risk, our healthcare workers.”

She highlighted the sacrifices of frontline healthcare workers who are not just addressing Covid-19 patients but handle the common medical emergencies as well. Mdm Ho extended her appreciation to everyone doing their bit in battling the pandemic, such as the volunteers sewing reusable masks or the anonymous donors tying bottles of hand sanitisers in lifts.

“Isolate the virus and not give it a helping hand to spread”

Mdm Ho continued her message and called for the public’s combined efforts in limiting the spread of the virus by practising proper hand hygiene, social distancing, wearing a mask when needed and speaking softly.

She encouraged people to keep their circles as small as possible during the circuit breaker period and to “speak softly to keep our droplets to ourselves, and keep out of reach of the other person’s droplets.”

Not forgetting the environment, she reminded everyone not to litter and stretch resources. “We don’t know how long the pandemic will last, and we must conserve our resources to last. And money isn’t everything,” said Mdm Ho.

Kiasu or kiasi?

In line with stretching resources to last, Mdm Ho noted that one could add more water to get a standard 40 per cent alcohol hand rub out of a 70 per cent alcohol solution. “We are trying to kill the Covid-19 virus, not the poliovirus,” she hinted. “Why use double strength when single strength means we can use twice as often or twice as long?”

For those without access to a decent face mask, she recommended using an old windcheater which is both breathable and water repellent. “We can use one or two layers of that for the outer layers of a DIY mask,” said Mdm Ho. “No old windcheater?” A woven breathable plastic umbrella would suffice.

“That’s all for now as we head into the circuit breaker,” said Mdm Ho as she ended her post.

And behind the govt and the people, are zillions of work streams humming busily. Sure, we will make mistakes every now…

Posted by HO Ching on Monday, April 6, 2020


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