Malaysian trapped in China shares her lockdown experience

Although there was a restriction of movement in China during the lockdown, residents were still allowed out to buy necessities. (AP pic)

The Covid-19 crisis in Malaysia has taken a turn for the worse in terms of the number of infections and the two deaths recorded.

Malaysia now holds the indignity of being the Southeast Asian country with the most infected, with over 790 cases of patients testing positive for Covid-19 and 728 under treatment.

With the government imposing a movement control order for the entire country from March 18-31, there are still many unsure of what they can and cannot do.

First and most importantly, do not panic! Instead, learn from the experience of this Malaysian woman who was in the city of Chongqing for 40 days at the height of the Covid-19 crisis in China.

She shared her experience on Facebook so that others all over the world who were currently panicking about getting infected with Covid-19, could learn from her.

The pandemic

She related that since the whole of China was under lockdown unlike the situation in Malaysia that does allow for some movement outside the home, the authorities there allowed only one household member to go in or leave their homes every two to three days to purchase necessities, and that too depending on the local situation.

“And when I say necessities, I really mean necessities because right now, only markets, supermarkets, pharmacies and certain clinics have been allowed to operate,” she said, adding that going for a stroll was absolutely out of the question.

“And if the police patrols spot you wandering about, you will be advised to return home.”

There were also rigid procedures imposed to stem the spread of the deadly infection. “When entering any building, a body temperature check was conducted on everyone.”

She related how the lockdown in China lasted for 40 days and that billions of people voluntarily quarantined themselves, spending long boring days just cooped up at home.

In all uppercase letters, she wrote, “THIS IS THE ONLY WAY TO STOP THIS VIRUS FROM SPREADING!”

She mocked those who complained that forced separation and quarantine were an affront to human rights and asked, “Please, what rights do we have to claim when we’re dead?”

She said that on the few occasions when she had no choice but to go out to purchase necessities, she followed a strict regimen for hygiene to reduce the risk of infection.

She also added, “I don’t stock-up on anything, even more so toilet paper.”

Here is her daily regimen to maintain hygiene:

  1. Wear a face mask (in China, whoever was caught without one was reprimanded).
  2. Carry a hand sanitiser and a small spray bottle containing a 75% alcohol solution with you always.
  3. If you touch a lift button or any other object or surface, immediately sanitise your hands before entering your car or touching anything else.
  4. Absolutely never touch your face, especially your eyes, nose and mouth when you’re outside. If you must rub your eyes for any reason, sanitise your hands first and use your inner wear to rub your eyes.
  5. After grocery shopping, place the groceries into the car and sanitise your hands.
  6. Upon returning home, wash your clothes with water and soap, remove your mask, dispose of it and wash your hands again.
  7. Change your clothes and immediately toss the laundry into the washing machine before taking a shower.
  8. Disinfect your groceries, the packaging, the plastic bags, and the shopping bags.
  9. Disinfect the car keys, doorknobs and handphones.

“Everyone’s cooperation is needed to stop the virus from spreading. If you feel that this is nothing more than the common cold and don’t take the necessary precautions, you are a threat to your community,” she warns.