As we have all been seeing on the news and on social media, the Coronavirus has been affecting the world in an unprecedented way. Drastic measures that have never been seen since 9/11 are being implemented by one government after the other. Everyone’s lives have either been put on hold or changed completely. Except for the astronauts. Their jobs and daily routine has pretty much stayed the same.
Who Has Been Affected the Most?
The first global industry to feel the epidemic’s effects is the worldwide travel and tourism industry. Hotel reservations and flight bookings were canceled worldwide across the board. In addition, malls, and public venues were either empty or were being shut down. Hospitals are flooded and the staff is working around the clock.
In addition, supermarkets and pharmacies are being emptied out as the masses are flocking to stock up for a nationwide quarantine. People who work in large businesses or require traveling can’t get to work or work at their workplace. For most of the population, life has been put in a complete pause.
How Does This Affect the Blind?
Well, it’s the same as asking how does this affect your own life. Or your neighbors. Or even your aunts and uncles, cousins, friends, and everyone else you know. The answer is, that it depends. Blind people, just like everyone else, have a variety of individual lifestyles. If they’re young, they still live with their parents and siblings. The married ones live with their spouses and kids if they have any. Some live in assisted living. Many live alone and are completely independent.
For those who are able to live their lives without requiring daily assistance from people who do not live near them, life is not as affected as those who require living assistance. They may not be able to go to work or to visit public areas, but they can still go about their day either independently or with the help of family members. They can shop online or in grocery stores, cook on their own and pretty much live the way they normally do.
Living assistance facilities, on the other hand, are an entirely different story. Some have shut down, sending the residents to their homes. Others have asked the staff to stay in quarantine with the residents. Every facility has found a solution that they are capable of providing with their available resources they have the availability of their staff members. The blind and visually impaired members in assisted living have probably been affected the most by the situation from within the blind population.
Are Blind People at a Higher Infection Risk?
Do more blind people get cancer than the rest of the population? the flu? diabetes? The answer is no. Being blind does not affect your immune system in any way that has been proven by science or medical research. So basically, they should follow the same health guidelines to avoid getting the Coronavirus as anyone else should.
In the meantime, what you could do is focus on using the time at home to your advantage. If you are working from home, then you could benefit from these tips for a higher level of efficiency at working from home. During your free time, play one of these adapted games for people with low vision. When you’re done, play the next game. Or another round of the first one. If you want to do indoor activities, take a look at this guide for six fun indoor activities that anyone with low vision and without can enjoy together. There is more to do while being in Quarantine then you would think…
OrCam Technologies wishes all of those who have been affected by the Coronavirus a fast and full recovery.