My Return to Argentina

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By Julian Pedrouzo
Staff Reporter

With the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), countries all around the world are entering a state of emergency. The United States is one of these countries and, as a result, schools are closing, and grocery stores are being emptied. Unfortunately, students all across the country had to go back home, and for some of them, this means flying to another country.    

The spread of the coronavirus is causing chaotic effects in countries within and around Europe, Asia, and the US. The quarantine of those travelers coming back from these countries is being applied by law as a prevention for the spread of the disease. 

My name is Julian Pedrouzo and I am a junior at Sacred Heart University. I am originally from Argentina, a country with a population of 44.2 million and so far, only 41 cases of coronavirus. As mentioned before, quarantine is being demanded by some countries upon return from the affected zone. In Argentina particularly, the quarantine has to be of 15 days in a completely isolated environment.    

“Quarantine was tough. I went through it a couple of weeks ago and after the first couple days, your desire to get out of the house is so big that you start spending hours in the balcony doing stuff that you would normally do inside,” said Sebastian Fontana, a former professional baseball player in the Intercounty Baseball League. 

“I am a very active guy who can’t be in the same place for long times; I get anxious. Quarantine was especially difficult because of that,” said Fontana. 

I have been in a quarantine situation for 3 days now and is already starting to get difficult. I am a guy who really enjoys the outside, going for runs, meeting with friends, so having to this period completely isolated while managing everything else that didn’t stop is stressful and difficult. 

“Quarantine is difficult but necessary. People have to understand that Argentina’s health system will collapse if the situation gets worse, and thousands of lives could be lost. It is not easy, but this is a time where the well-being of other people can mean your well-being is taken care of, so we have to switch our attention to everyone else so we can all stay healthy,” said Dr. Alberto Fontana. 

I have 12 days left on my quarantine period, but I know even after that it is going to be difficult to be outside without any worries of getting the disease. Regardless, I am counting the minutes until I can get out and live normally again. 

“Healthcare is a social responsibility, especially in moments like this. Is the prevention of every citizen that will save the lives, not the doctors or the medicine. If we all care enough, we can stop this before it even gets started,” said Dr. Fontana. 

Argentina suffered its first loss on March 7th when the virus took the life of a 61-year-old man. Six days after, on March 13th, the virus took its latest life. 

Argentina has suspended all activities that involve a public place and a handful of people together, like school, concerts and sports events of any kind, as a prevention until further notice. 

“It is amazing the power of people when there is the willingness to work together,” said Dr. Fontana. 

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