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In the battle against COVID-19, India has already lost over 300 frontline doctors. Besides, having the risk of getting infected by the coronavirus and exhaustion from non-stop 10-hour duty shifts, occurrences of doctors getting ill-treated, assaulted, attacked by stones and mobs, ostracized by their housing societies during the ongoing pandemic are numerous.
On the occasion of National Doctors Day, the Morning Standard spoke to some healthcare staffs about the motivation they get to fight both personal and professional battles:
Dr Inder Kumar Kasturia: He is a Consultant Physician & Wellness Expert - Family Medicine, at Aakash Healthcare & Super Speciality Hospitals, Dwarka said that they are not only battling against the virus, but also the great fear which is in the minds of patients and their relatives. As doctors they have to serve people regardless of any situation.
Dr Gauri Aggarwal is a founder of Seeds of Innocence & Genestrings, at New Friends Colony, said that conducting COVID-19 tests, increasing number of cases, testing and treatment has resulted in burnout for medical staff. They just don’t work in PPE during summer, but also deals with the stigma of working in hospitals. There is only one motivation that they are privileged to be at the forefront in this fight against COVID-19. This has resulted in never-before-seen levels of teamwork, commitment and selflessness.
Dr Ravi Shekhar Jha is a Senior Consultant and Head of the Department, Pulmonology, at Fortis Escorts Faridabad said that working in COVID-19 ward, is very exhausting but is rewarding too. It drains to wear the PPE for lengthy hours, especially, when one realizes that the face shield vision has become blurred due to fogging. But after seeing the smiling faces of patients especially of young patients who have plenty of life ahead, it is worth it.
Dr Manoj Goel is a Director & Head, Pulmonology, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine, at Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurugram said that he sees his clothes totally drenched in sweat when his PPE is taken off. Initially, it was frightening to work in a COVID-19 ward and the staff also feared working in such circumstances. They patients stay isolated from their families so they have to make sure that they stay positive.
Dr Dinesh Kumar Mittal is a Director and Head, Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, at Fortis Hospital, Shalimar Bagh said that three months back, they did not know what to do. At present, they have begun to understand about the spread of virus and what are the telltale signs. Doing a10-hour shifts in the PPE kits is like fighting a battle. They do not have any access to food, water, or even washrooms during this shift. To keep themselves fit, they need to hydrate themselves and eat properly.
Dr Anurag Bansal is a technical Head for North and East India and Lab Operations Director for Gurgaon Clinical Reference Laboratory, SRL Ltd. He said that being at the forefront in this pandemic is an experience that he will remember throughout his life. The sense of duty towards the society and nation has kept them going.
Dr Manisha Ranjan is a Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, at Motherhood Hospital, Noida. She said that while they work to bring a ray of hope in the lives of their patients, they forget their own mental state. They have worked through the nights, without sleeping a wink. They live in a constant baseline anxiety and fear about the exceptional situation, the moment they enter their home.
Irrespective of the actual patient workload, they are very anxious. The persistent requirement to stay up to date with COVID medical updates and counseling patients that nothing would happen to their newborns is triggering burnout. Social distancing has also increased the anxiety levels.
Source: The New Indian Express