Guwahati: Life has not been easy for this lot since the last few months. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, doctors and health professionals have been working round the clock to bring the pandemic under control. The ills of this pandemic notwithstanding, this might just be the best time to wish our doctors, whom we have all been guilty at some point of having taken for granted, a Happy Doctor's day and salute them for their selfless service. Today, everywhere we look on social media, we see greetings pouring in. At this juncture, it would be fruitful to look back and see how successful the society has been in giving back to these warriors.
Over seventy doctors have lost their lives in India during the Covid-19 battle, according to a report by The Tribune. At the same time, more than 1,000 doctors have succumbed to the pandemic all over the world. These frontline workers have worked day in and day out, risking their lives.
'Our fight is against the pandemic and not against the patient': Even though this mantra is ringing in various media platforms, people continued to treat Covid-19 infected patients, as well as doctors, differently. Across the nation, doctors continue to be subjected to violence and abuse. In Bangalore, for instance, when doctors went from door to door checking for symptoms among people, they were violently attacked. In Bhopal, a team of doctors returning after their emergency shift was beaten up by the police who accused them of spreading the virus.
Several other shocking incidents were reported from various parts of the country showcasing how doctors have been denied the dignity that they deserve. It was only after the government passed an ordinance following IMA's appeal, that attacks against doctors ceased.
Is this how we should be showing our gratitude to our saviours?
Another matter of concern is the lack of adequate PPEs in many hospitals. Rajib Dasgupta of JNU's Community Health department requested that infection control audits should be started to ensure the safety of the doctors. Also, many doctors, especially in Delhi, have not received their salaries for the last few months. Dr. Naresh Trehan, Chairman, and M.D of Medanata, Medicity, while speaking to the NDTV today appealed to the hospitals to take care of all the frontline warriors.
Many doctors treating COVID patients stayed away from their families fearing the spread of the pandemic. At the same time, we read stories of patients under quarantine running away from hospitals.
Should we not be behaving more responsibly?
Indian origin doctors treating COVID patients in different parts of the world did their best and took the countries' name to fame. Dr. Ankit Nahata from Assam working in St. Mary's hospital in the US cured almost 100 COVID patients. It was also during the COVID times that we read about another Indian origin doctor, Dr. Ankit Bharat, who performed a precarious double lung transplant, one of its kind on a COVID patient.
On the veteran physician BC Roy's birth and death anniversary, it would be unjust if we just hail our doctors with good words and praises. Rather it's the time for the administration to review their working conditions and ensure their safety. The society, by abiding by their wisdom and by considering them one among us, should be celebrating Doctor's day.
IS IT REALLY A HAPPY DOCTOR'S DAY FOR THEM?
Exhausting daylong schedules extending straight up to fifty-sixty days.
The time-consuming procedure of donning PPE.
Going on rounds forget the heat of the summers
Unable to use the restrooms for hours.
Face shields blurred due to fogging.
Stares and stigmas following them home
Back home? Shower first and then a simple cup of tea"