Pandemics (COVID-19) in human history have always produced infinite and sometimes unmatched problems that require great thinkers to offer solutions. Researchers are positive opportunists who do not succumb in their efforts to continue investigating the ‘what’, ‘when’, ‘who’, and ‘how’ of each situation just to bring help to humanity.
In the current outbreak, researchers in various disciplines must think about how to offer a new lens of understanding of the plague and more importantly offer urgent solutions to related challenges that threaten human structures for survival.
Since the outbreak of the global pandemic COVID-19, scholars in the fields of Health Sciences and Allies have begun to investigate the etiology, epidemiology, pathophysiology, histopathology, clinical evaluation/treatment/management, and diagnosis of COVID-19.
A survey of scientific work in this area shows the major contributions of Asian researchers, especially from China, where the outbreak began. These hardworking researchers have never succumbed to their efforts to medically investigate what must be done to fight the virus.
These outstanding researchers continue to pursue this path even under dangerous working conditions resulting in the loss of several. They have shown and demonstrated what researchers must do at all times in finding solutions to ease the pain of fellow humans even during a pandemic. However, there is still much to be done by their colleagues in other countries.
There is a need for medical scientists to investigate the genome sequences of the new coronavirus in various regions of the world. Interestingly, other scholars in the field of medicine are busy investigating this phenomenon to inform knowledge of the coronavirus, suggesting preventive measures and more importantly, finding medical drugs and vaccines to fully combat it.
For example, when medical scientists search through the lens of orthodox medicine, herbal practitioners are experimenting with how to use herbal extracts to produce drugs that can boost the immune system and / or provide a strong immune buffer to fight the coronavirus virus. This effort is praiseworthy. More work needs to be done in finding more efficient ways to test COVID-19 patients, conduct contact tracing, and prevent / preventive measures for coronavirus.
Researchers in the field of Engineering, specifically Computer and Mechanical Engineering are designing technology to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Digital technologies such as drones and robocops have been designed and used in several countries, to conclude, the manual enforcement of locking.
Likewise, cellular technologies such as the development of new applications for tracking COVID-19 patient contacts as well as those who have been in contact with them are being designed. For example, MIT researchers are developing a system based on artificial intelligence to complete manual contact tracking carried out by public health workers who rely on Bluetooth signals over short distances from smartphones.
In South Africa, ambulances are endowed with automated test kits and laboratory services designed as a result of diligent research efforts used in testing and tracking people with COVID-19 even in remote areas that are difficult to reach. In Ghana, the Ministry of Health recently launched the COVID-19 application to track people who are infected or who have been in contact with carriers of the COVID-19 virus.
This technology was developed as a result of rigorous studies by several mechanical engineers as well as computer hardware and software engineers being deployed to assist in the fight against COVID-19. There are still many technological tools to fight the coronavirus that are still needed and researchers who are dedicated to the field of engineering are constantly investigating this potential.
Researchers in agriculture has a great research assignment for them. This lockout produced a record postharvest loss that was high in countries. What is an efficient way to reduce post-harvest losses during the pandemic and locking periods? How can farmers use online marketing strategies and platforms to connect to clients to protect their products so they don’t experience high financial losses? What can the food and agriculture ministry do to help these poor farmers manage a locking crisis? What are the efficient methods produced by perishable agriculture that can be processed into non-perishable products by food manufacturing companies? This is an extraordinary theme that should be investigated by farmers during this pandemic outbreak. Unfortunately, studies in this field have not been conducted.
The tourism sector and hospitality management were devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many tour dates and tourism activities have been canceled due to travel and lockout bans. It is estimated that the tourism sector globally will lose high revenues to nearly two billion dollars.
This is the time researchers in tourism and hospitality management might consider virtual means to market these tourist sites through intensive research into smart tourism and e-tourism. The developing tourism sector has not been given much attention, especially in developing countries. This pandemic period should be a time when researchers in this field will find ways to increase public awareness of smart tourism and electronic tourism.
Experts in Social Sciences and Humanities such as sociologists, anthropologists, and humanists have the task of investigating the sociological impact of the COVID-19 outbreak such as ways to deal with social anxiety as a result of a pandemic. Also, assessing the economic impact of COVID-19 on business activities, the need to start e-business, e-marketing, e-banking, and other electronic forms of conducting business activities are important topics that must be explored.
Social and cultural anthropologists must look into the cultural and social perceptions of different people throughout the world about the coronavirus and recommend the application of culturally relevant interventions to combat the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. Likewise, psychologists and psychiatrists should suggest ways to deal with post-traumatic disorders from quarantine, as well as stigmatization and discrimination against COVID-19 patients and their relatives.
Moreover, this is the time for educational technologists to come out by proactively conducting online teaching through various forms of learning management systems, intelligent tutoring systems, and social media platforms. Artists must creatively create animated cartoons and other forms of signs in electronic format to be promoted online in combating myths and misinformation around COVID-19 treatment and the need to eliminate all forms of stigmatization and discrimination against people tested. for COVID-19. Of course, this is the time for researchers in all fields of study to collaborate to investigate pluralistic ways to combat the global pandemic COVID-19.