Microorganisms are very small (0.001 mm), not visible to our naked eye and can be seen only under microscope. Among the microorganisms, viruses are minute (<0.0001 mm or 0.1 micrometre) and can be observed only in electron microscope. Corona viruses are enveloped positive sense single stranded RNA viruses that cause respiratory tract infection. COVID 19 (corona virus disease) caused by SARS CoV2 (Severe acute respiratory syndrome, corona virus2) was first reported from Wuhan city in China in December 2019. In COVID19, CO stands for corona VI for virus D for disease and 19 for 2019. WHO (World Health Organization) declared a pandemic (global epidemic) of COVID19 on 11, March, 2020. Pandemic is increase in incidence of a disease in large population over wide region in short period.

Generally all precautions are taken to prevent contamination of microorganisms in laboratories (Microbiology, Biotechnology, and Tissue culture labs) and, food process ( Dairy, Cheese) and microbial product ( Breweries, Antibiotic) industries, as they are not visible to our eyes. Prevention of virus contamination is still a difficult task. 

Four Ws, (a) Wear mask, (b) Wash your hands with soap, (c) Watch your distance and (d) Wait for your vaccination will prevent corona virus and protect us from Covid19.

a. Wearing of face mask is recommended to control the spread of corona virus, which causes Covid-19. Among the various masks, cloth (fabric) mask trap the droplets released during sneezing, coughing and talking and reduce the spread of viruses. A typical triple layered cloth face mask is 50-60 per cent protective. They are washable and can be reused. Surgical (medical) masks protect the nose and mouth from infective droplets with viruses in the environment and at the same time droplets from the wearer are not spread. They are flat, thin light blue disposable masks with 60 per cent protective and for single use. The 95 masks provide a higher degree of protection against novel corona virus than a cloth mask or surgical mask. They can filter out both large and small particles. The N95 masks are designed to filter 95% of particles or droplets from the air breathed in. However, these masks are not for general public use and should be reserved for healthcare workers. Masks with valves are not recommended.

Please wear the mask correctly by covering your nose, mouth and chin, every time you go outside. Mask prevent the entry of corona virus into our nose and mouth, the entry points through which corona viruses enter, establish (colonize) and cause infection. Avoid touching mask when in use. Do not remove or lower the mask to speak to others. By wearing mask we are not easily identifiable by others and we need not interact with them!

b. Washing hands with soap for at least for 20 seconds or using hand sanitizer remove the corona virus from our hands. Wash your hands before and after removing the mask. Don’t make contact with any person by shaking hands or hugging. Do not touch common surfaces and objects outside home. Hand wash after touching objects such as door knobs or handles. Global Hand washing Day is observed annually on October 15. It is to raise awareness and highlight the importance of hand washing as an effective method of disease prevention. It is a simple act that keeps us healthy and safe. Hand washing is considered as one of the key cornerstones of COVID-19 prevention. This pandemic year marks a critical reminder for the world that this simple, cost effective practice can save lives from corona. Likewise we take bath every day with bathing soap, not to become beautiful! But to discharge microorganisms attached to our skin.

Wet your hands with clean water (potable water), apply the soap all over the hands, in the front and back of your hands and in between fingers for 20 seconds. Then rinse the hands with water and dry using clean towels. If the soap and water are not available, use sanitizers with 60% alcohol to clean your hands.

c. We have to maintain a physical distance of two metres away from others at all times. This is to avoid the contact with corona virus discharged from patients through talking, sneezing, coughing and body secretions. Always meet people in well ventilated (aerated) rooms and outdoor places. Avoid crowded places like lift, cinema theatres. Festivals.

d. Corona vaccines (Covaxin, Covishield, Moderna, SputnikV) protect us from Covid-19. The corona vaccines take up to 14 days to develop antibodies. Vaccines are antigens that lost pathogenicity (ability to cause disease) but retained antigenicity (ability to produce antibodies). Vaccines produce infection that does not result in disease. They are preparations of live weakened or killed pathogenic microorganisms or their products. Edward Jenner (1798) used cowpox virus to immunize against small pox and considered as ‘Father of Immunology’. Louis Pasteur coined the term ‘Vaccines’ for weakened cultures of pathogens. He developed the vaccines for anthrax (1881) and rabies (1885). Vaccination eradicated two dreaded diseases in India, small pox in 1977 and polio in 2004. Vaccines induce antibodies production and safe guard us against diseases. Corona vaccines induce production of specific antibodies against corona virus. Corona vaccines safe guard us from Covid19 and vaccination is the only solution to prevent future outbreaks/waves of corona.

Book your corona vaccine schedule in ‘cowin.gov.in’ website, wait for your turn and get vaccinated. By getting vaccinated you protect yourself, your family and people around you from being infected with corona. Our body build strong immunity against corona virus and we are at reduced risk from corona illness. As vaccines are not 100% effective, we need to follow the precautions already mentioned namely, wear mask, hand wash and physical distance. Corona vaccines prevent severe illness and dying from corona virus.

During this corona period, we should take care of our health by eating balanced nutritious food rich in proteins (pulses, egg), minerals and vitamins (fruits and vegetables). Herbal drinks, regular exercise and yoga boost our immune system and protect us from Covid19. First three Ws, (a) Wear mask, (b) Wash your hands with soap, (c) Watch your distance, prevent corona virus and the fourth W, (d) Wait for your vaccination, will protect us from Covid-19.

East or West, Home is the best, Take some rest,

Don't call any guest, No outgoing zest,

This is the life with Corona! Be in your nest, is my request.