People not statistics - A view of Donegal by Siobhán McNamara

Monday, March 23, 2020

They are not just Covid-19 statistics, they are people

They are not just Covid-19 statistics, they are people

The most important thing to remember when we hear the figures in our evening Covid-19 report is that the numbers represent real people.

These are people like you or me who until very recently were at work or school, maybe enjoying their retirement or making plans for the future. 

In the Republic of Ireland, four of these people are no longer with us. 1,008 more have had to come to terms with the fact that they are suffering from a virus that is highly contagious and potentially fatal. Many more people in Donegal and around Ireland this evening are sitting in their homes with Covid-19 symptoms, feeling frightened, lonely and overwhelmed.

It is also important to remember the statistics we hear each evening from Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan only refer to people with a confirmed diagnosis. The true figures might never be known.

Then there are people whose lives are affected in other ways. They may be out of work, unsure what the future holds. They may feel out of their depth trying to help their child with schoolwork at home. Or they might be on the front line of medicine, retail and other sectors and have no choice but to deal with what is to come. 

None of us wants to end up a statistic. We are a society, not a bar chart. Each and every person has the power to influence the shape of that chart through compassion, solidarity and forethought. We all want to come through this as unscathed as possible. But we need to work together, even if that means staying apart.

We can only do this if we are united in our approach.

Ní neart go cur le chéile.

Read also: A Mother's Day like no other - A view of Donegal by Siobhán McNamara

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