PROTECT DOCTORS: THE KNIGHT IN THE SHINING ARMOUR
It is surprising to see that at this time, the name which is mostly used and heard by the people of the world is not that of their families or loved ones, but is that of a virus. Corona virus (Covid-19), a virus which has spread so much of unrest in the whole world that it is now a burning topic in every household. In India, it has been over a month now since the official lockdown was announced by the honorable prime minister of India. Since then, the corona virus cases in India have not really stopped or lessened because there are still some people in the country who don’t understanding the severity of the problem and still go out of their houses. Some go just for the sake of seeing how a lockdown looks like, some go out just to be seen on television getting punished by police for stepping out, some go out of their houses because they are getting bored and don’t really think that corona virus can actually do anything to them and most importantly, some go out in the name of religion. This last stratification of people has got famous in the entire country because of their act of stupidity – ‘THE TABLIGHI JAMAT’.
Among all these people, there is one section of the society that is working day and night to provide treatment and help to the people affected by this deadly virus keeping their own lives at risk. This section of the society is that of the doctors and the health care providers. The doctors very rarely get a chance to go home and meet their families and be with them in this period of unrest. The ones who get to go home are always scared that they might infect their whole family. Some doctors and health care providers even sleep in their respective workplaces. Therefore, stepping out of the house is directly proportionate to putting the lives of these doctors in danger. How? If these people keep coming out of their houses, they will expose themselves to the virus and there is a great chance that they might get infected as a result of which they will have to be admitted to the hospital where the various doctors are already working, this would further put them at risk and they might get infected. This chain once started would be never ending slowly the whole country would be infected because this number would become so huge that it would become impossible to control it. In this uncertain period of hardship doctors and health care workers are the only knight in the shining armour for the people of the world.
It is unfortunate that a country like India, which is known for its cultures, values and ethics is becoming so inhumane and impatient in such times of distress. There are a few people who are attacking the doctors and health care workers even after knowing that they are the only hope for the people if they get infected. They are the only ones who can prevent the spread of the virus. The uncouth acts done by handful of people can give rise to huge problems. It is necessary for the country to make new laws and policies for the doctors and health care workers. Our law makers have been very vigilant as far as this case is concerned and have already started working on this very fragile topic of doctor’s safety. The safety of the doctors and the health care workers is of equal importance at this point of time. Over the past month we have seen how the Tablighi Jamaat case has lead to the beginning of the hardships for doctors. Hundreds of Muslims from across the borders and local areas got together for a religious meet even after the government had declared a lockdown. These people are solely responsible for the spread of the Covid Virus even further nearly doubling the numbers in a matter of days. The doctors due to their responsibility went to different parts of the country where the Jamaaties were suspected to be staying and were just making a gesture of humanity by going to their places and taking them to the hospitals so that they could be treated and their families and neighbors did not get affected by it. In return for this gesture of humanity, the doctors and health care officials and also the police was beaten up by the angry mob of people for no appropriate reason. After this attack on the doctors there were multiple other cases of such disrespect towards the only people responsible enough to save the country. It is very important that the doctors do not face such hardships by the people. It is non justifiable both morally and ethically. The legislation of the country has however done a brilliant job but there are many more ways in which the new policies and laws can be made for the benefit of the doctors. The government has however approved of the insurance schemes for the health care workers and doctors. The doctors and health care workers have been announced rs.50 lakh insurance per person. The finance minister declared that the medical insurance scheme would include sanitation staff, doctors, Asha workers, paramedics and nurses. This insurance scheme was announced by the finance minister under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan package.
This however, doesn’t really provide any safety to the doctors. This scheme would only help the family of the doctors monetarily if they get infected but does not protect them from getting infected. Some of the measures which can actually make a difference would be legally imposing punishments on the people who grow hostile. For example: if the people manhandle the doctors or attack them, they should be imposed with heavy fines and imprisonment up to 2 years depending on the severity. Once such laws are imposed there will be a generation of fear amongst the people and automatically such cases would stop taking place. As far as the safety of the doctors is considered, there is yet another aspect which is of the most important value and keeping in view the doubling cases of corona virus is the availability of the Personal Protective Equipment kit. The PPE kit is a must when a doctor has to treat the patients. These kits are the only barrier between the doctors and the virus. Imagine, the only barrier available for doctors and a shortage of that as well. Despite of the fact that protection gears are being made by several states, the government should make sure that there is an abundance of such kits. The shortage of these kits made the government enter into a contract with China, the country which initiated the spread of virus. 15 million kits will be ordered but personally speaking, India should not trust a country which sent totally useless covid-19 test kits which lacked in giving the correct results and that to at an overpriced rate. This is a lesson for the country. What if these kits are also just like the test kits and don’t provide adequate safety to the doctors? Our country has already been manufacturing PPE kits but should gain further insight and get into a contract with more and more Indian companies in order to manufacture more PPE kits and that too of a the best quality so that there is abundance but not shortage of these kits and all the doctors remain safe. In order to manufacture hygienic PPE kits, just like the companies already manufacturing the kits, the new companies should also follow the following measures:
- The list of the materials should be given to the manufactures which should be used while manufacturing the kits
- The workers of such places should properly sanitize their hands before entering the manufacturing area.
- The workers should not be allowed to leave the premises between the working hours. If they have to exit, they should again be thoroughly sanitized before entering the manufacturing area.
- These workers should wear head gear, gloves and clean uniform at the time of manufacturing.
If these measures will be taken into account also by the negligent manufacturers, there will be no need to bring protection kits from outside the borders. The country would produce enough kits and never let there be a shortage of these kits.
As seen in UP and Delhi, where doctors are accommodated in hotels like ‘The Lalit’, all the doctors working in every part of the country should be accommodated in such hotels with all the basic amenities and that too free of cost. The human right commission should look into the matter and provide a written document demanding for free accommodation and food for the doctors and in the absence of the doctors, their families should also be taken care of by providing them with basic confessionary and utility products. Every state of the country shall accommodate doctors in the best quality hotels in terms of hygiene. This is the least of what they deserve.
In conclusion, it would be appropriate to say that the doctors, health care workers, the government and, of course, the people of the nation have shown their unity and have together made two states of the country corona-free. Some of the existing loopholes would automatically fill up once the small fraction of people depicting inhumane behaviour understand that the doctors, health care workers, policemen, sweepers, electricians etc. are all working just for their welfare. The whole population of the country should come under the same umbrella and fight against this deadly virus as a single unit.
Written By – Ashna Sharma