This woman in China wore a giraffe costume when she visited a hospital to protect herself amid the coronavirus outbreak. Her unusual way of protection triggered heated discussion in social media.
The woman is seen in a video fully covered from head to toe, with only a small window of transparent plastic film for her to see.
Wearing a giraffe-shaped costume to avoid #coronavirus infection, a woman in Sichuan, #China comes to the hospital to get medicine for her father. Without daily disinfection, wearing these costumes home may bring the germs & viruses back, warns an expert. https://t.co/Cq8za26Zwf pic.twitter.com/PfqORxbpv5 — The Paper 澎湃新闻 (@thepapercn) February 14, 2020
Woman resorted to wearing costume due to shortage, expired face masks
According to a report by South China Morning Post, the woman explained that her face masks have expired. She instead brought two costumes online due to the shortage of surgical masks in the country.
The woman, known only as Ms. He, resorted to the bizarre outfit after her sick parents asked her to run errands in Luzhou, China, the Daily Star reported. Mrs. He said she needed to collect medication for her family.
The woman narrated that her father had been a regular patient at a local hospital's department of respiration before the deadly coronavirus broke out.
To reduce the risk of her father being infected while visiting a hospital, Ms. He decided to go to the hospital and ask his father's doctor to conduct a virtual consultation with him through a video conference.
Mrs. He, as the healthiest person in her family, also took on the tasks of grocery shopping and running errands to prevent her parents from catching the virus.
"It's sad but rather endearing to see this. Really hope this epidemic will be over soon," a netizen commented in a Chinese social media.
"It's better than no protection at all. She [the woman] wouldn't have done this if she had other options," another netizen said.
Wearing costumes fail to protect people from the lethal virus
Authorities said such costumes are unable to protect people from coronavirus and needed to be disinfected after use.
It is warned by Chinese medics to change the face mask regularly. According to the BBC, medical personnel is asked to use a new one every six hours. The frequency indicates the country would need two million covers each day.
Face masks, although experts are skeptical about its effectiveness, are in widespread use both among the general population and medical staff.
There is already a massive demand which is only going to boom in China, particularly as coronavirus is expected to peak in mid-to-late February this year.
China purchased 220 million face masks since January 24 and February 2. South Korea is one of the countries supplying the Mainland, according to BBC. The authorities have also removed tariffs and duties on imported medical components since the beginning of February.
The outbreak of the new virus - formally called COVID-19 - has so far claimed thousands of lives and infected at least 64,000 human beings in 28 international locations and territories across the world. Nearly 99 percent of those infections had been in China.