More than a third of the world population is currently under some form of partial or total lockdown to limit morbidity and mortality due to covid-19. Whereas these measures are working, they are exerting an unprecedented negative socio-economic impact on the general wellbeing, and thus may not be sustained for long. Alternative control measures that limit the spread of the virus and yet facilitate socioeconomic progression and wellbeing are urgent. In this article, we make suggestions based on the disease transmission characteristics, the World Health Organization recommendation, and current practices across the globe. The suggestions focus on the prevention of transmission and acquisition by; (1) ensuring all put on some form of protective barriers to prevent further spread and acquisition while in public or risky spaces, (2) proactively preventing contamination of surfaces at individual and group/community level, (3) disinfecting frequently all surfaces prone to contamination in public and private spaces (4) ensuring that all gathering, work, schools and other public places have COVID-19 prevention protocols in place and are followed, (5) developing an efficient surveillance system that ensures early detection and isolation of COVID-19 cases, (6) strengthening health facilities at all levels of the healthcare system to ably screen, test, isolate, and manage COVID-19 before complications set in, (7) Stepping up health education and awareness at population level on prevention measures for COVID-19 using all possible platforms, (8) Designing special prevention measures for congested neighborhoods and slum dwellings, care homes, and other institutionalized dwellings to prevent a surge in infection and catastrophes, and finally (9) strengthening national, regional and global collaboration to prevent cross-border transmission. A combination of several of the measures above should help ease lockdown and moreover sustain the gains in the absence of the vaccine – thus, ease the consequences of strict social distancing, travel bans and lockdown across settings.
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