New world order

The world is rapidly entering a new phase into which almost none of us have any experience.
This is uncharted territory on a global scale. Everything has changed.
The coronavirus pandemic which has encompassed the globe in a matter of weeks is causing unprecedented shutdowns and isolations.
As a result there is an understandable element of concern in the community – and the Hills is no exception – but it is in the wider interest that this does not escalate into full blown panic.
The stripping of supermarket shelves of specific goods is the manifestation of that unease.
It is frustrating that such widespread panic buying serves only to feed off itself, possibly escalating to a point where it has a negative impact on the broader community (particularly the vulnerable) while serving no practical purpose in the fight against coronavirus.
We must all accept that the world is about to be a very different place in the short to medium term.
The cancellation of sporting events will be nothing on the scale of what we are likely to experience.
Experts estimate a minimum of 50,000 Australians could be killed by this virus. It could be as high as 150,000.
That puts the footy season being cancelled into perspective.
It is difficult for people to remain calm knowing this could be the outcome from a disease for which we have no cure.
It is worth remembering this disease does not kill everyone it affects, however, the elderly, those with existing health issues and people with suppressed immune systems are particularly vulnerable.
The best everyone can do at this stage is to remain vigilant, abide by strict hygiene principles and keep as isolated as practical.
Everyone can and must play a part.
Perhaps such actions seem futile defences against such a rampant disease but the reality is that it’s the best we’ve got at this stage.
There will also be serious economic implications.
Small business will be particularly hard hit.
The tourism and service industries have been the first to suffer, but general small business – particularly those which target discretionary spending or gathering in groups – hotels, clubs, events – are likely to suffer significant downturns as well.
On the positive side it is predicted that a vaccine will be developed sooner rather than later.
So for now it is up to all of us to accept the reality of the situation, abide by the guidelines and look after each other – particularly the vulnerable.