History reveals pandemic is not alien to the human civilisation and customarily originates with global-chaos. Outbreak of disease creates an environment of fear and anxiety that inflames the stigmatization in society. Stigma is the mark of disgrace that puts a person apart from rest; the victim suffers blame shame game in the community. Social stigma in context of health denotes, the damnation is shared by certain group people who endure contagious disease and being considered as disease spreader . Currently during the COVID-19 pandemic, this phenomenon is being accelerated by scientific gaps in diagnosis, treatment and disease epidemiology resulting in pandemic shooting mortality.
In the year 2015, World Health Organization(WHO) established the guidelines to eliminate the practice of correlating viral diseases with particular people or place of origin like novel corona virus being referred as the “China virus” or “Chinese virus” . These guidelines help to prevent stigma and stereotyped behaviour among the people and clarified in case of outbreak, viruses can infect all human being and everyone is at risk regardless of their nationality and ethnicity . WHO has warranted COVID-19 as the biggest enemy of human chronicle and potentially more severe than terrorism . It has also been disclosed that, substantial enemies of current scenario are
- Our front line warriors against this pandemic, the health care and police personnel are double confronting the peril. Despite risking their life and bearing the guilt of potentially exposing their families to the risk of infection. They execute over extended and exhausting duties with conscientiousness to save the mankind. In return they receive reprimand from the society in the form of being treated as contagious. These people are being thrown out of their homes by societies and forced to spend homeless night. Research has proved, higher the stigma faced by health care workers results in proportionate rise of psychological distress and hampering their efficiency .
- Metro cities the dream city of rural India, millions of workers leaves their home every year for chasing their dream. Agony of stigmatization is most tragic for urban slums and migrant population of these cities, where life is compromised in wrestling with essentials need to sustain life and almost no scope for hygiene, sanitation and social distancing. Lockdown not only left them jobless, homeless but also with insolvency. Uncertainty of crisis compelled them to bid-adieu their cities with starving family on endless road to walk. The wound of travel is exaggerated, when they get inhuman treatment by their own people in the form of ostracism on eventually reaching their destination.