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National Doctor’s Day: Coronavirus Exacerbates Burnout Rate In Doctors; How To Address This?

Doctors and other healthcare workers who are the first line of defence in a fight against COVID-19 are at the highest risk for depression, insomnia, anxiety, and increased alcohol consumption

National Doctor's Day: Coronavirus Exacerbates Burnout Rate In Doctors; How To Address This?
Highlights
  • Dr Ashok Rai, Kanchan Poly Clinic practises yoga to come out of depression
  • Doctors are experiencing symptoms of anxiety, depression: Dr Shweta Sharma
  • Dr Preeti Singh suggests healthcare workers to check their mental health

New Delhi: With the contagious COVID-19 virus gripping the nation, the first line of defence, doctors and other healthcare workers have been caught in the eye of a storm. The saviours are at the highest risk for depression, insomnia, anxiety, and increased alcohol consumption. The thought that you may cause the infection to your loved ones when you go back home every single day is crawling under their bellies.

Also Read: Thank You! On National Doctor’s Day We Speak To The Frontline Workers To Know The Learnings Of COVID-19

There is always a constant fear that runs in my mind that what if I am spreading the deadly coronavirus to my children, who diligently follow the hygiene guidelines as suggested by the health bodies, said Dr Shuchin Bajaj, Internal Medicine, Ujala Cygnus Orthocare Hospital, New Delhi.

Besides battling with fear, Dr Bajaj also struggles with sparing quality time for the family.

Since life has become different especially for a healthcare professional, I try to utilise the time with my family as I know I might have just a couple of hours to spend with them in our 24-hour job. It’s very hard to express those feelings as a father, who can’t hug their children and kiss them, added Dr Bajaj.

Who would have thought that the person who could provide aid against the disease would be in the clutches of the disease itself? Doctors who are in hotspots usually show a higher degree of a psychological burden compared to the ones away from them.

Also Read: National Doctor’s Day 2020: A Sand Art Salute To The ‘Superheroes’ For Their Selfless Service

A large proportion of healthcare professionals, especially doctors are experiencing symptoms of anxiety, depression, insomnia, and psychological distress. They report severe symptoms, which should not come as a surprise, as they often must engage in a lot of emotional labour, like reassuring patients, while keeping their own emotions in check, said Dr Shweta Sharma, Consultant-Clinical Psychologist, Columbia Asia Hospital, Gurugram.

The old adage ‘Prevention is Better than Cure’ comes handy for the doctors when it comes to stopping the COVID-19 spread. The sole fear among doctors which increases anxiety level in them is of their family being affected due to them, along with long working hours with PPE kits.

Also Read: National Doctor’s Day: Tackling Mental Health While Treating People Amid Pandemic

I practice Yoga, meditation to come out of depression and try spending quality time with my family with some recreational activities,” said Dr Ashok Rai, BAMS, MD, Kanchan Poly Clinic, Badarpur.

“Though it is a noble profession, for one to embrace it every single day and fight one’s fear and the patients’ fear and illness is not an easy task. Doctors should be discussing with their peers and watch their moods in terms of feeling sad, mood swings, increased irritability, increased anger, please speak to someone competent to handle mental health,” said Dr Preeti Singh, Sr Consultant Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Paras Hospitals, Gurugram.

Also Read: National Doctor’s Day 2020: India To Celebrate Medical Professionals On July 1, All You Need To Know

Like soldiers on the frontline, doctors are performing their duties during the ongoing pandemic with utmost diligence. We need to acknowledge their contribution and should express the gratitude in these testing times.

Life has become an emergency drill for medics working 24X7 at a full-fledged COVID-19 hospital armed with PPE kit and determination to save lives. National Doctor’s Day, July 1, is a perfect day to thank all of them for their round the clock service.

Also Read: Mumbai Doctor Jalil Parkar Calls His Fight Against COVID-19 As ‘Defeating Death’

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