New Delhi: William Shakespeare once said “Some people have greatness thrust upon them,” which means that one was put in a situation that required greatness to succeed. And the current COVID-19 situation is literally like this where doctors and healthcare workers had to rise towards the pandemic across the board in order to fight the coronavirus battle. As India marks National Doctor’s Day today (July 1) with a theme of lessening COVID-19 mortality rate, NDTV speaks with doctors across the board who have been leading this battle against COVID-19 from the frontline.
Talking about National Doctor’s Day and about the life of doctors amid the pandemic Dr Suresh Kumar, Medical Director of LNJP Hospital said,
This year’s doctors day is special as most of our doctors are struggling and fighting COVID-19, which is the worst disease the world has seen. We have lost so many of colleagues who were dealing with this epidemic, just two days ago we had lost Dr Aseem Gupta who was fighting this battle from the frontline. This disease is different, not because there are fear and stigma attached to it but also in terms of the stress it gives to the family members of the doctors and healthcare workers. The doctors can’t go home, can’t see their families, can’t stay with their elderly parents as such is the scare of the disease. Still, leaving all this behind, doctors are doing their best. We all are doing this with all our heart and passion, we are fighting a war against coronavirus every single day. In the last two to three months, we have treated more than 7,000 COVID-19 patients.
Speaking about the healthcare system in India, Dr Kumar added,
The country definitely needs to improve the number of doctors and nurses and then maybe work on infrastructures and facilities when it comes to the healthcare system.
Dr. P. Raghu Ram, President of The Association of Surgeons of India reiterated the importance of Doctor’s Day added,
The importance of this day has come to the forefront at the time of COVID-19 pandemic and certainly, this is the day to acknowledge, recognise, salute and pay tribute to the selfless and unconditional service that has been rendered by the medical fraternity particularly the frontline healthcare workers, who have placed their own lives at risk to save several people out there. Several thousands of doctors have been infected and sadly few have also lost their lives. This is the perfect day for the doctors, patients and a community together to rebuild this lost trust and ensure we continue to save lives. The medical profession has always been noble and shall continue to stay noble but in the recent past there have been certain incidents that have in some way broken the trust between the doctors and patients.
Talking about India’s healthcare system at large, he added,
The part of GDP that is spent on our healthcare system in India is currently the lowest among the other countries, we have realised that India’s healthcare system is very fragile. The healthcare workers who are working in government institution are under tremendous stress, they are understaffed, there is less equipment and yet with all these inadequacies, they have been doing their best, putting their lives at risk. Doctors are humans as well, some errors can happen, but if the community will start beating the doctors and abusing them then I think the moral will go down further. During the COVID pandemic, we all need to work together and understand that this battle can only be won if we fight it together.
Dr Vivek Nangia, Principal Director and Head Respiratory and Critical Care Medicines, Max Saket talking about how the title coronavirus warriors and how it has motivated him to work more towards the cause adds,
I am proud knowing the fact that the medical fraternity has lived up to the disease and are fighting this battle from the frontline, selflessly, without worrying about their own lives and lives of their family members. I think the perspective of people are also changing towards doctors from the time they would think that the doctors are very commercial and wanted to make money and fleece the people to now realising and actually giving us the title of COVID-19 warriors. Personally, I feel very motivated whenever I am called as a coronavirus warrior, it just encourages me a lot. We all are involved in this battle and I am sure we will be able to emerge out of this pandemic soon.
About National Doctor’s Day 2020
Back in 1991, Government of India in honour of the birth and death anniversary of the great physician and the second Chief Minister of West Bengal, Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy decided to mark National Doctor’s Day. And since then July 1 is called a National Doctor’s Day to pay a tribute to all the frontline workers who have been saving lives after lives.