Student's prompt testing an inspiring example of self-discipline

Wang Yong
A college student returning to Shanghai from Hubei Province lost no time in seeking coronavirus testing. His actions may have saved many others from exposure to contagion. 
Wang Yong

A young college student has shown us how self-discipline can make a big difference in fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic, evidenced in a timely coronavirus test he took over the weekend, after he returned to Shanghai from Qianjiang City, Hubei Province, to resume his internship.

According to media reports, the 21-year-old student surnamed Ren arrived in Shanghai on the evening of May 14. He stopped at Hongqiao Railway Station and then checked into a local hotel in the Pudong New Area. The next day, he lost no time in seeking medical testing in a local hospital, where he was asked to stay for further observation in isolation. Later, nucleic acid tests proved that he was infected by the novel coronavirus.

Shanghai has tracked those who had been in close contact with him and arranged proper isolation for them, too. Places visited by the student have also been sanitized. Meanwhile, in Qianjiang City, where the student came from, officials said local close contacts had been found and placed under medical isolation. Notices have been issued to passengers who boarded the same train to Shanghai with the student.

Imagine if the student did not bring himself for coronavirus testing in time. Even if he eventually did, say, two days later, there would be more people having close contact with him, hence an enhanced risk of contagion among crowds. In a concerted global effort to jointly fight the coronavirus, an individual's neglect – not to say intentional cover-up – could cause collective harm in no small measure.

Yes, many cities in China have gradually resumed business. Students are going back to school and shops are reopening. But in no case shall we be less vigilant against the virus.

If you have a fever, make sure you go to a clinic on day one and refrain from going to crowded places. Wear a mask where necessary, as usual. The virus may have been retreating here and there, but in no way shall we end our good habits to contain the coronavirus, such as social distancing and readiness to report our health records to responsible medical institutions.

Not all people are self-disciplined, though. The other day, I went to a district administration center in west Shanghai to handle my wife’s social insurance affairs, where everyone is required to wear a mask. An old man and a young lady, having forgotten to wear masks, were stopped by staff at the entrance. The two visitors lost their temper and tried to enter the hall by force.

In this time of continued battle against the common threat to the human beings, a bit of self-discipline and self-control will go a long way toward beating the virus.

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