Facing Covid-19 while young and "Invincible"

By Alice Liana Galli

The Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon warns that coronavirus advice “shouldn’t be seen as optional” but as a set of rules to be followed by everyone. That includes young people who she says are showing “sense of invincibility” during the ongoing pandemic.

The warning follows the rise of the Scottish death-toll to 14 from Covid-19.


Speaking on BBC radio Scotland Good morning Scotland programme earlier today, Nicola Sturgeon declared that the rules put in place by the Scottish Government are the key to slowing down the spread of the virus and reduce its peak impact, and avoid overwhelming the NHS.

Ms Sturgeon underlined the importance of everyone acting responsibly and safely for the good of the community. The First Minister especially addressed younger people saying: “You can’t guarantee that you won’t get this virus, you can’t guarantee you won’t get seriously ill if you get it. Even if that was true, you will be at risk of passing it on to others, particularly the most vulnerable.”

The First Minister Nicola Sturgeon during one of her speeches

Ms Sturgeon’s concerns finds support in the words of Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization. A dew days ago, while speaking at an online news conference from WHO headquarters in Geneva, Dr. Tedros, said:

“Although older people are hardest hit, younger people are not spared. I have a message for young people: You are not invincible, this virus could put you in hospital for weeks or even kill you. Even if you don’t get sick the choices you make about where you go could be the difference between life and death for someone else.”

Dr. Tedros, Director-General of the World Health Organization

But how do young people actually feel about the spreading of Covid-19?

To better understand their thoughts about the ongoing pandemic we talked to Louise and Maria Cormack, both 16 year old students of the Cults Academy in Aberdeen.

Jack Turner, also 16, agreed with the First Minister’s words and underlined the importance of everyone doing their part for the good of the community.

This “sense of invincibility” and selfishness of young people in regards to other and more vulnerable members of their community is shared by other classmates.

I think that up until recently the first ministers statement was correct, however it has now been announced that kids as young as 12 have suffered serious health issues due to COVID-19.

I think that this new information has begun to put in perspective, the dangers of the virus for young people. I think that even though it has been said it will “barely affect young people” we need to take it seriously as even if we aren’t vulnerable ourselves we could be the ones who spread it to other people including our relatives.

Most people I know are staying inside and not socialising, following government advice. In the past three days, I have not left the house. The virus is having an impact on all of our daily lives due to school being cancelled, along with exams. I think that if everybody stayed inside then the virus would not be spread as easily and the NHS wouldn’t be overwhelmed. Charlotte, 15

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