New Delhi: As India continues to report a surge in daily COVID-19 cases, healthcare and frontline workers are bending over backwards to save lives and help the country deal with the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Highlighting the burden of healthcare workers as they work for long hours wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), Dr Sohil Makwana from Gujarat’s Ahmedabad shared a picture on social media. Dr Makwana’s sweat drenched picture showing the after-effects of wearing PPE went viral on social media.
On April 28, Dr Sohil Makwana who works at GMERS Medical College at Dharpur, Gujarat shared a collage of two photographs that showed him completely drenched in sweat – one in his PPE suit and another without it. He captioned the picture as, “Proud to serve the nation.”
Proud to serve the nation pic.twitter.com/xwyGSax39y
— Dr_sohil (@DrSohil) April 28, 2021
In the following tweet, Dr Makwana urged citizens to take the COVID-19 vaccine jab and stay safe. He wrote, “Talking on the behalf of all doctors and health workers.. we are really working hard away from our family.. sometimes a foot away from positive patient, sometimes an inch away from critically ill oldies… I request please go for vaccination.. it’s only solution ! Stay safe.”
NDTV spoke to Dr Makwana to know what was going on in his mind on the day he clicked his picture in PPE and shared it on social media. Dr Makwana said,
It was a very hot and humid day. I was in the PPE doing my rounds and then later in my room writing up case papers. I thought to take pictures to show how difficult this is for doctors and healthcare workers.
Dr Makwana also spoke about the current COVID-19 situation and the challenges being faced by health workers at large in the fight against COVID-19. He said,
The situation is worst everywhere. Now the cases have declined; the patient flow has reduced; the resources and infrastructure have improved. We have started another hospital with 125 beds in our campus. We were expecting a thunderstorm (of Covid cases) in the second wave but what we got was a tsunami. There was a sudden surge in cases. We were expecting 200 patients but we were flooded with over 500. The sudden surge in cases led to a resource crunch and this happened everywhere. Also, in this wave, youngsters have been affected more.
Elaborating more on the struggles of healthcare workers on COVID-19 duty, Dr Makwana spoke about staying away from family for weeks and mental stress. To beat the stress, Dr Makwana, who is also a writer, dedicates one hour to writing every day and also exercises regularly.
Dr Makwana also highlighted the additional pressure his female colleagues, particularly those with young children at home, face.
Children cannot stay without their mothers. For women who have children at home, this is even more difficult to manage family and emergency duties and women are always given extra duties anyway. For females it is cumbersome, he added.
Speaking on behalf of all health workers including nurses and medical students, Dr Makwana urged everyone, especially youngsters to take the coronavirus seriously. He signed off with a profound appeal and said,
Isolation and vaccination is the only solution we have. We need to stay at our home to contain the catastrophic second wave of COVID-19. We might have a third or fourth wave as well.
NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene.
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