They say a crisis brings out the best in us. Some times it also brings out the worst in us. While we fight for bread and hand sanitisers there are people fighting for our lives and there is no one fighting for their lives.
Nurses and doctors are working double and triple shifts and what are they getting in return? Scarcity of protective gears, delays in salaries and worse, threats, physical violence and so on.
Neurosurgeon, Dr Simon Hercules died from contracting coronavirus after treating an infected patient. When his friends and family tried to give him a proper burial they were assaulted by locals. On the other hand, health care workers have been assaulted by patients inside the hospital and outside, while shopping for groceries or even when they’re coming back home from a hard day of saving people’s lives.
Doctors are our lifeline, they are giving their lives for us, the least we can do is let them work.
We want to show our support to the brave health workers in India and though we can’t go down and fight along their side, there are small things we all can do to make sure their lives are a little more manageable.
How Can We Help Our Health Workers During The Covid-19 Pandemic:
Little initiatives go a long way. Here are some things you can do to make their lives a little easier during the Covid-19 pandemic.
1. Donate Medical Equipment
Doctors are running short of protective kits and equipment that save customers. A complete PPE kit that comprises of 1 coverall suit, 1 face shield, 1 hood cover, 1 face mask, 1 pair of gloves, 1 pair of legging, one pair of goggles and a disposable bag, costs about INR 1,500 – 2,000 per kit.
Because of the scarcity, administrations are not able to give their medical staff with proper protection. Apart from protective gear, hospitals are short of ventilators that are crucial for critical patients.
Other things like hand sanitizer, disinfectants, tissues and other cleaning materials are scarce too, therefore threatening the spread of the virus.
To help frontline workers, you can get in touch with foreign and Indian companies that are making protective gear. If we all donate one PPE kit each, we can make a huge difference for our medical staff.
If you can’t donate a full kit, donating hand sanitisers, gloves, masks and disinfectants to hospitals also makes a huge difference.
Other equipment like ventilators cost more than 2 lakhs each and it may not be possible for many to donate such a massive amount. However, we can donate small amounts of money for it and allow medical departments to distribute the money.
2. Donate Money To Credible Sources
Many companies and reputable influencers have started fundraisers to donate to govt hospitals and health workers who don’t have enough resources.
Many companies have started funds for all those affected by the coronavirus. You can support the one(s) that appeal to you the most.
3. Donate Blood and Plasma
Now with so many patients becoming critical, blood transfusions are becoming essential. But because of the high demand, blood banks are threatening to become empty every day.
Secondly, an experimental therapy called convalescent plasma therapy has been proved to show some results. In this therapy, the plasma of a cured patient is taken and is mixed with the affected person’s blood. The theory behind this treatment is that the plasma of the coronavirus survivor will have the antibodies needed to save a critical Covid patient.
Currently, 19 patients in India have undergone plasma therapy and have shown favourable results. It has been used earlier to treat H1N1 patients and has seen success as well.
While covid survivers should consider donating their blood plasma, you can donate blood even if you weren’t affected. There are many blood donation camps that are working specially for coronavirus patients. We can help by getting in touch and checking if we are eligible to donate blood.
Here’s a blood donation campaign schedule in Delhi. If you are aware of similar campaigns within your respective localities we urge you to share them below.
4. Do Not Overstock
Many people are still emptying all the shelves in Indian supermarkets. Remember that doctors and nurses may not get enough time to shop for themselves, and when they do visit the grocery stores, there’s nothing left for them.
So, let’s help, let’s adjust. There’s no need to stock supplies for an entire year. You can stock edibles for 1 to 2 weeks but if there are only a few packets of bread in the store, buy one and leave the others for another deserving buyer.
Do you have a health degree? Have you been out of touch with medicines? This may be your chance to put it to use. Many organizations are helping former licensed medical practitioners to revise essential patient care techniques and many people from the modelling, acting and other backgrounds, with a medical degree and decided to join hands with health workers and offer their services.
One such person is Ms Bhasha Mukherjee who was Miss England. She gave her crown up to help coronavirus patients.
If you don’t have a medical degree, that is okay. There are plenty of organisations that need volunteers. If you are healthy and feel you can donate your services to hospitals as a non-medical staff, now is the time to do so.
6. Stay Home
Lastly, and perhaps the most important thing you can do to help medical practitioners is to stay home as much as you can.
Only leave the house if you have to do something essential, like buying grocery etc. Don’t leave the house at all if you or a family member is sick.
If you have flu-like symptoms you can call the doctor before showing up at the hospital. Crowding hospitals can make you susceptible to contracting the virus or you may spread your infection to someone else.
Make sure to wash your hands after coming back home and always wear a face mask or a scarf while leaving the house. You can use this time to get stronger and improve your immune system but stay away from public places as much as you can.
Remember that the best way to take care of your caregivers is by taking care of yourself and others around you.
Medical staff are people who have been given the extraordinary task to eradicate a virus. But they can’t do it without our help. So lets collectively show our support to our doctors by cooperating with them and protecting ourselves.