• Users Online: 37
  • Print this page
  • Email this page


 
 Table of Contents  
LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 310-313

Lockdown versus no lockdown: Strategies for COVID-19 and its impact on mental health and economy


Department of University and Higher Education, Imphal, Manipur, India

Date of Submission14-Nov-2020
Date of Acceptance17-Nov-2020
Date of Web Publication24-Dec-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ramananda Ningthoujam
Department of Physical Education, Health Education and Sports, DM University, Indo Myanmar Road, Imphal - 795 001, Manipur
India
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/cmrp.cmrp_61_20

Rights and Permissions

How to cite this article:
Ningthoujam R. Lockdown versus no lockdown: Strategies for COVID-19 and its impact on mental health and economy. Curr Med Res Pract 2020;10:310-3

How to cite this URL:
Ningthoujam R. Lockdown versus no lockdown: Strategies for COVID-19 and its impact on mental health and economy. Curr Med Res Pract [serial online] 2020 [cited 2021 Jan 25];10:310-3. Available from: http://www.cmrp.org/text.asp?2020/10/6/310/304832



Dear Editor,

A third of the global population is on coronavirus lockdown (LD). To contain the virus, most of the countries (population; 727 crores approx.) adopted a nationwide lockdown (LD) and some countries (population; 28 crores approx.) are testing no LD (NLD) strategy [Table 1].
Table 1: Countries battling coronavirus with no lockdown

Click here to view


Nevertheless, there are also 15 countries with zero corona cases: three Asian countries, two African countries and ten Oceania countries [Table 2].
Table 2: COVID-19-free countries

Click here to view


The approach to combat COVID-19 differs from country to country.[13] According to Tufts University,[14] countries, such as Western Europe, are ready to fight the disease and transit to a digital economy. Other countries including the USA, Australia and Canada were less prepared for the battle but well prepared digitally.

Countries such as Italy, India and South Africa were ready to fight the pandemic but not ready for digital economy. Still, other countries, including Turkey, Ireland, Japan and Mexico, were neither prepared nor ready for digital economy.


  Lockdown Strategy Top


India, France, Italy, the USA and the UK have implemented the world's largest and most restrictive mass quarantines. Italy is the first European country to impose a nationwide LD. It is believed that the highest number of death rate in Italy is due to its negligence in the first stage of the pandemic.[15] LD strategies seem to be helpful in those countries with large population to flatten the curve on coronavirus. However, countries such as India,[16] the USA[17] and Germany[18] are facing a huge challenge in controlling the public because anti-LD protesters are demanding an end to stay-at-home orders.


  Impact on Mental Health Top


The LD strategy is causing fear, anxiety, loneliness and depression, leading to suicide among COVID-19 patients. Roy et al., 2020,[19] reported the need to address social attitude, anxiety and perceived mental healthcare in the Indian population during the pandemic. Chowdhury[20] also claimed that the number of deaths by coronavirus in NLD countries is lower compared with that of the LD countries.

A number of suicide cases of COVID-19 patients have been reported from around the globe.[21],[22],[23],[24] As per news report, 50% increase in suicide rates was seen in the past 2 months compared to the same period last year.[25]

According to McKelvey,[26] 'most crimes in the USA are comparatively low as most people are at home due to government LD orders. However, police are concerned about the rise in domestic abuse as people when confined at home are subject to short-temper'. Scott Decker, a criminologist expert, says, some of the violence has 'shifted to inside homes'.

The LD strategy also increases worldwide recessions which increase in criminal behaviours among youth. Mari Rege et al., 2020,[27] in their study explained the effect of job displacement and criminal behaviour among Norwegian men separated from their place of employment during a mass layoff. They found a strong evidence that displacement increases criminal activities as time availability increases.


  Impact on Economy Top


According to the International Monetary Fund (2020), the COVID-19 pandemic will severely impact growth across all regions. Facts and figures can be found at https://blogs.imf.org/2020/04/14/the-great-LD-worst-economic-downturn-since-the-great-depression/#post/0. According to McKinsey (a US-based management consulting firm), a prolonged LD, such as the one in Wuhan, could decrease India's gross domestic product by 8%–10%.


  No-Lockdown Strategy Top


Countries such as South Korea,[28],[29] Taiwan[30] and Hong Kong[31] are battling the coronavirus pandemic while keeping its economy up and running with the NLD strategy and are winning the battle against COVID-19. One of the countries is Taiwan which kept its coronavirus infection very low (<500) due to advance preparation and drills. Daily production of mask in Taiwan increased from 1.8 million to 8 million and has been referred to as 'Taiwan's Mask Miracle'.

These countries have learnt a lesson during the SARS epidemic in 2003 and now are fighting coronavirus with early preparation, widespread testing and deployed technology for widespread contact tracing. With their advanced technology, infected individuals' interactions and travels were retraced and exposure risks are made available. The support of public, and dedication from frontline corona warriors, made it possible. They believed that a nationwide LD not only decreases economic crisis but also increases mental health challenges such as fear, stress, depression, anxiety, loneliness and suicide.[32]

The drawback of NLD strategy is that the chances of spreading the virus are higher. Recently, countries such as Pakistan,[33] Bhutan[34] and Singapore[35] were forced to call a nationwide LD after they failed to flatten the curve of COVID-19 with the NLD strategy.

To conclude, both these strategies have their own pros and cons. The debate on the approach to handle the COVID-19 pandemic, that is NLD or LD, is still conflicting. It seems that NLD strategies are effective in those countries with a previous experience of an epidemic, where the public are supportive and ready to comply with the government order. In countries with a large population like India and Italy, LD strategies seem to only slow down the spread of the virus. However, both strategies need public support and compliance with government order. Besides, mental and financial support also plays an important role.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
Sarah Boseley. Test and Trace: Lessons from Hong Kong on Avoiding a Coronavirus Lockdown. The Guardian: Hong Kong; 17 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/17/test-trace-lessons-hong-kong-avoiding-coronavirus-lockdown. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 12].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Financial Times. Japan Rejected Lockdown Because virus will Resurge, Says Expert UK, 2020, April 23, Available from: https://www.ft.com/content/9bac4ad5-22e3-4bcd-b07b-8a248fe44465. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 18].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Erdbrink T, Anderson C. Life has to go on': How Sweden has Faced the Virus without a Lockdown. The New York Times; 28 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/28/world/europe/sweden-coronavirus-herd-immunity.html. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 08].  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Campbell C. South Korea's Health Minister on How His Country Is Beating Coronavirus without a Lockdown. TIME, Shanghai; 30 April, 2020. Available from: https://time.com/5830594/south-korea-covid19-coronavirus/. [Last accessed on 2020 Apr 30].  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Ramsay R. Easter at a Time of COVID-19 Guyanese Find Alternatives to Tradition Amidst Partial Lock Down. Kaieteur News; 12 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.kaieteurnewsonline.com/2020/04/12/easter-at-a-time-of-covid-19-guyanese-find-alternatives-to-tradition-amidst-partial-lock-down/. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 22].  Back to cited text no. 5
    
6.
Ojha A. Uruguayan Diplomat Flouts Lockdown Rules in Delhi, Fights with Cops. India Today; 11 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/uruguayan-diplomatflouts-lockdown-rules-in-delhi-fights-withcops-1665977-2020-04-11. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 25].  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
News 784. Business As Usual – No Lockdown for St Vincent; 04 May, 2020. Available from: https://news784.com/local-news/ business-as-usual-no-lockdown-for-st-vincent/. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 26].  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Kindzeka ME. Cameroon Eases Coronavirus Lockdown, But Neighbors Block Access. VOA News; 1 May, 2020. Available from: https://www.voanews.com/covid-19-pandemic/cameroon-eases-coronavirus-lockdown-neighbors-block-access. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 28].  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Phiri C. Total Lockdown Cannot Work In Zambia – Government Zambia Reports; 7 April, 2020. Available from: https://zambiareports.com/2020/04/07/total-lockdown-cannot-work-zambia-govt/. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 28].  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.
The Japan Times. News Hong Kong, Taiwan and South Korea Buck Global Lockdown Trend Tokyo; 8 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/04/08/asia-pacific/hong-kong-taiwan-south-korea-buck-global-lockdown-trend/#.XrFFPqgzY2w. [Last accessed on 2020 Sep 05].  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Patin K. While Europe is in lockdown, Belarus Remains Open for Business. War on Science (unknown). Available from: https://www. codastory.com/waronscience/coronavirus-belarus-europe-lockdown/. [Last accessed on 2020 Sep 05].  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Ramesh S. These are the 15 Countries that have 'Zero' Coronavirus Cases. The Print; Bengaluru; 16 April, 2020. Available from: https://theprint.in/world/these-are-the-15-countries-that-have-zero-coronavirus-cases/402496/. [Last accessed on 2020 Oct 15].  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Chakravorti B. Exit from Coronavirus Lockdowns – Lessons from 6 Countries. Academic Rigour, Journalistic Flair; The Conversation: Exit from Corona Virus Lockdowns; updated 6 May, 2020. Available from: https://theconversation.com/exit-from-coronavirus-lockdowns-lessons-from-6-countries-136223. [Last accessed on 2020 May 11].  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.
Tufts University. New Research: Many Countries Severely Lag in Preparedness for Post-Pandemic, Socially Distant Digital Economy. New wise: Corona News Source; 2020. Available from: https://www.newswise.com/coronavirus/new-research-many-countries-severely-lag-in-preparedness-for-post-pandemic-socially-distant-digital-economy/?article_id=731572. [Last acessed on 2020 May 14].  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.
DHNS. Negligence in Initial Stage Proved Costly for Italy. Mangaluru: Deccan Herald News; 13 April, 2020. Available from: https://m.dailyhunt.in/news/india/english/deccan+herald-epaper-deccan/negligence+in+initial+stage+proved+costly+for+italy-newsid-n177996506. [Last accessed on 2020 May 20].  Back to cited text no. 15
    
16.
AFP. Anti-Lockdown Protesters Clash with Indian Forces. New Straits Times: Indian Security Forces Clashed with Angry Residents; 9 May, 2020. Available from: https://www.nst.com.my/world/world/2020/05/591055/anti-lockdown-protesters-clash-indian-forces. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 26].  Back to cited text no. 16
    
17.
Rachel Sharp Anti-Lockdown Protesters Hit the U.S. COVID Epicentre: New Yorkers Rally in City where More than 13,000 have Died for an end to stay-at-home Orders while Tensions Flare with Police at 'Freedom' Rallies Across the Country Mail Online; 1 May, 2020. Available from: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8278891/Thousands-anti-lockdown-protesters-turn-protests-country.html. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 26].  Back to cited text no. 17
    
18.
Ruptly. Germany: Several Protesters Detained at Anti-Lockdown Demo in Berlin [Video file]; 02 May, 2020. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RfvtwfMjys, [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 01].  Back to cited text no. 18
    
19.
Roy D, Tripathy S, Kar SK, Sharma N, Verma SK, Kaushal V. Study of knowledge, attitude, anxiety & perceived mental healthcare need in Indian population during COVID-19 pandemic. Asian J Psychiatr 2020;51:102083.  Back to cited text no. 19
    
20.
Chowdhury BR. Network of Influenza care Expert (N.I.C.E) Way to Cure COVID-19. 1st ed.. New Delhi: Diamond Book; 2020. p. 19.  Back to cited text no. 20
    
21.
Mamun MA, Griffiths MD. First COVID-19 suicide case in Bangladesh due to fear of COVID-19 and xenophobia: Possible suicide prevention strategies. Asian J Psychiatry 2020; Volume 51, June 2020, 102073 [online Journal]. [Doi: 10.1016/j.ajp. 2020.102073].  Back to cited text no. 21
    
22.
TRT World YouTube. German Minister Commits Suicide Over COVID-19 Stress [Video file]; 30 March, 2020. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NsXwygRs1w0. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 01].  Back to cited text no. 22
    
23.
Nath A. Medical Student Serving COVID-19 Cases Found Dead in Chennai Hostel, Cops Suspect Suicide. India Today; Updated 1 May, 2020. Available from: https://www.indiatoday.in/india/story/medical-student-serving-covid-19-cases-found-dead-in-chennai-hostel-1673188-2020-05-01. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 04].  Back to cited text no. 23
    
24.
NBC News. New York Doctor on Front Lines of Coronavirus Pandemic Dies by Suicide. NBC Nightly News Online; 27 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PvXv57eKPB0&t=19s. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 04].  Back to cited text no. 24
    
25.
Yasmeen A. Suicide Case Highlights Importance of Counselling for COVID-19 Patients The Hindu: Karnataka, Bengaluru; Updated 27 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/suicide-case-highlights-importance-of-counselling-for-covid-19-patients/article31448550.ece. [Last accessed on 2020 Jun 30].  Back to cited text no. 25
    
26.
McKelvey T. Coronavirus Lockdown: How has it Affected Crime? BBC NEWS: US & Canada; 24 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-52416330. [Last accessed on 2020 Apr 24].  Back to cited text no. 26
    
27.
MariRege, Torbjorn Skardhamar, KjetilTelle, MarkVotruba. Job displacement and crime: Evidence from Norwegian register data. Labour Economics; December 2019 (61), 101761 [Online Journal]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.labeco.2019.101761 [Last accessed on 2020 April 25].  Back to cited text no. 27
    
28.
Fleming S. South Korea's Foreign Minister Explains how the Country Contained COVID-19. World Economy Forum; 31 March, 2020. Available from: https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/03/south-korea-covid-19-containment-testing/. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 30].  Back to cited text no. 28
    
29.
Choksi N, Shah A. Modi's Goldilocks Moment: Hong Kong Model of Lockdown, Wuhan or South Korea. The Print; 15 April, 2020. Available from: https://theprint.in/opinion/modis-goldilocks-moment-hong-kong-model-of-lockdown-wuhan-or-south-korea/401907/. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 30].  Back to cited text no. 29
    
30.
Chia LI. Virus Outbreak: No Lockdown Needed in Taiwan: Chen. Taiwan, Taipei Times; 23 April, 2020. p. 3. Available from: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2020/04/23/2003735146. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 30].  Back to cited text no. 30
    
31.
Sataline S. COVID-19's Resurgence in Hong Kong Holds a Lesson: Defeating it Demands Persistence. STAT News; 26 March, 2020. Available from: https://www.statnews.com/2020/03/26/coronavirus-hong-kong-resurgenece-holds-lesson-defeating-it-demands-persistence/. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 30].  Back to cited text no. 31
    
32.
Gramigna J. COVID-19's Mental Health Effects by age Group: Children, College Students, Working-Age Adults and Older Adults. Healio Psychiatry; 8 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.healio.com/psychiatry/practice-management/news/online/%7B250e2c9c-e510-4109-bb84-024660539c08%7D/covid-19s-mental-health-effects-by-age-group-children-college-students-working-age-adults-and-older-adults. [Last accessed on 2020 Jul 30].  Back to cited text no. 32
    
33.
Mitra D. Explainer: As COVID-19 Numbers Rise, Why Is Pakistan Reluctant to Call a Lockdown? The WIRE, South Asia; 21 March, 2020. Available from: https://thewire.in/south-asia/pakistan-coronavirus-covid-19-lockdown-imran-khan. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 10].  Back to cited text no. 33
    
34.
New Spotlight Online Magazine. Bhutan Announces Lockdown with Fourth Coronavirus Positive Cases. Keshab Prasad Poudel Online; 31 March, 2020. Available from: https://www.spotlightnepal.com/2020/03/31/bhutan-announces-lockdown-fourth-coronavirus-positive-cases/. [Last accessed on 2020 Aug 10].  Back to cited text no. 34
    
35.
The Economist. Not even Singapore has been able to Avoid a Lockdown. Singapore; 11 April, 2020. Available from: https://www.economist.com/asia/2020/04/11/not-even-singapore-has-been-able-to-a-lockdown. [Last acessed on 2020 Aug 12].  Back to cited text no. 35
    



 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2]



 

Top
 
 
  Search
 
Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
Access Statistics
Email Alert *
Add to My List *
* Registration required (free)

 
  In this article
Lockdown Strategy
Impact on Mental...
Impact on Economy
No-Lockdown Strategy
References
Article Tables

 Article Access Statistics
    Viewed270    
    Printed4    
    Emailed0    
    PDF Downloaded16    
    Comments [Add]    

Recommend this journal


[TAG2]
[TAG3]
[TAG4]