In the current scenario of the world health crisis due to COVID-19, from Bridging the Gap we’d prefer to emphasize the higher risk faced by persons with disabilities or chronic sicknesses, notably in low and middle-income countries.During the pandemic situation, differently abled persons are the silent sufferers, some of the difficulties faced by them are:
Access to timely information and communication:
The most basic however essential issue in today’s context is access to timely data and communication on COVID-19. In these past few months, the Central and state governments have issued multiple tips and notifications around COVID-19 management. And yet, many people have grappled with confusion and limitation of or in some cases overload of data concerning the pandemic. However, not continuously has this information been created on the market during a timely manner and in accessible formats for persons with disability. In the current circumstances, wherever carrying masks and keeping social distance may be a vital health risk mitigation strategy, persons with hearing and vision impairments, who rely on the use of touch or lip-reading to speak their desires, are troubled to manage their daily lives without the concern of acquiring or spreading the virus. There has been nominal thrust on innovative solutions ( clear masks) and access to those solutions to support the communication challenges of those citizens.
Lack of healthcare visitors:
Across the United States at the start of the pandemic, there was inconsistency in implementing policies that allowed support persons to accompany patients with disabilities. As a result, many are denied care or might have experienced adverse impacts of not having their support person with them.
Negative consequences resulting from social distancing:
The golden rule throughout the pandemic has been to limit interaction with others the maximum amount possible, this will be tough for those who want additional help or need a caregiver,for those with physical and sensory disabilities seeking accommodation and for those with mental state conditions troubled in isolation.
Financial and societal support:
Besides limitations around access to data and infrastructural support, coronavirus has a darker and a lot of worrisome consequence across the world for differently-abled persons―increase within the instances of abuse and violence and abandonment because of reasons of impoverishment, inadequate support system, financial challenges among others. As a result of job losses, furloughs, and wage cuts, several differently-abled people and their support system―families, friends etc―have been troubled to manage their day-to-day lives.
It is also vital to get rid of the barriers that groups face in accessing health services and hygiene products, yet to think about affordable accommodation measures to permit them to figure from home and, if that’s unfeasible, to ensure they receive a paid leave to ensure their financial gain.
Similarly, confinement measures ought to be adapted to the requirements of specific teams to confirm their well-being. For example, people who would like home help ought to keep receiving it and, within the case of persons with psychosocial disabilities, they cannot be required to live in total isolation
We can fight coronavirus together. Don’t leave persons with disabilities behind.