Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Frontline warriors

One of the key factors determining the economic development of a country is the health of its population. Good public health is considered fundamental to the welfare of a society. Health, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not just merely the absence of disease. Today we are in the midst of a health crisis in the form of the novel corona virus pandemic that have affected people in hundreds of thousands across the globe. Never in our wildest dreams did we think that we would ever come across a situation like this. Terms like social/physical distancing, self-isolation, lockdown and even pandemic were not in our vernacular before. We are facing one of the greatest challenges, with normalcy yet to be restored as governments try to contain the infection spread. In our State, the number of people who are testing COVID-19 positive is rising daily and more cases are likely to emerge in the coming weeks. In such a public health emergency, our frontline warriors are just there in the battlefield fighting the pandemic tooth and nail to protect the community. The pandemic has posed intense hardships to our society but the strength, resilience and concern of our healthcare professionals are far greater who are working vigorously round the clock to keep our community safe and healthy. They are the ones who are actually putting their own lives at risk while treating a corona positive/suspected patient and hence run a high risk of getting infected. They are working untiringly, helping people relentlessly combat the contagion and are trying their utmost to prevent patients spreading virus to others. Reportedly, levels of contagion spread even among the healthcare workers have also started ringing alarm bells. So far, at least 239 frontline workers have tested positive and they account for 7% of the total cases in the State. There are also reports that some of their relatives have been infected. There is no denying the fact that the novel corona virus has pushed us all to a state of immense crisis. Apart from the doctors and other healthcare workers, our nursing workforce is putting itself in harm’s way to save our lives. Undoubtedly, nurses are the first line of defense in any healthcare issue. Today, as the world is putting up a united front to fight this crisis, our nurses and midwives are also the frontline soldiers in this battle who selflessly put their health and strength on the line for the well-being of others on daily basis. They are the unsung heroes who have exceptional levels of workload, particularly those specialized in intensive care units, in healthcare management or those directly involved in combating the lethal virus. They, along with other healthcare staff, are fighting the killer virus by providing high quality treatment and care. They are organizing and reorganizing wards to open more beds for infected patients while keeping others, including women in labour, safe and healthy. They are taking stock of equipment and lending it across units. With patients testing positive on the rise, nurses are on toes 24/7. They are providing advanced levels of care for emergencies and trauma. They are not only risking their lives but also keeping their duty above everything else. They are devoting hours, days and weeks to taking care of patients. In a scenario like this, we need to support them and take a moment to thank them for their commendable services. Nobody could have imagined the critical importance of nurses in our society brought into focus so clearly by the outbreak of COVID-19. The invaluable role they are playing is a testimony of their sacrifice, courage and commitment to a healthier and safer society. They have been exhibiting strength and care for patients, check on them, comfort and clean them up even if patients are unkind and ungrateful to them. Despite all these odds, nurses alongside other healthcare professionals are serving the society selflessly to their best expertise. This being so, our society needs to support and take care of nurses and other healthcare providers. Our society depends on their conviction to treat the public every day with their clinical excellence and deliver care with compassion. As the whole healthcare experts are on the forefront of getting us through this catastrophic situation, we need to strengthen their resilience with our gratitude and honour their contribution.