RN Meena is the lead nurse in the post-Covid ward at Gleneagles Global Hospital in Chennai. The 30-year-old healthcare worker walks into her patients’ room after sanitizing her hands with a big smile on her face. When she speaks to the patients, the care in her voice is evident.
Back home, Meena is the young mother of a seven-month-old baby. She lives with her child, husband and in-laws. She makes sure to take all precautions at work to ensure she does not get infected and put her loved ones at risk during these difficult times.
Working in the Covid ward was a tough decision to make, but she has been part of the team since the first lockdown.
“Biggest fear is infecting my baby”
Meena’s colleague Shiny R is a senior nurse in the oncology unit of the hospital. The 28-year-old is six months pregnant with her first baby.
“This is my precious baby as I have conceived after three years of marriage. Even though I am at high risk, I take care of many other high-risk patients who come for chemotherapy treatment. My biggest fear is that I may take the virus to my family or my baby,” Shiny said.
She said that even though her family is stressed, she comes to the hospital to do her duty. She keeps herself safe by boosting her immunity with multivitamins and wearing a personal protective equipment kit at all times.
Shiny said her message to the people is to be safe and get vaccinated as soon as possible.
No time to spend with family
These superheroes in scrubs have been working day in and day out during this very busy year, leaving them with almost no time to spend with their families.
Dr Spoorthi Arun, internal medicine physician and managing director at Promed Hospital in Chennai, is the mother of three children. Before the pandemic struck, her family would spend a lot of time and go for outings together.
Dr Spoorthi and her husband, who is also a doctor, live in a constant state of worry.
“My biggest fear is that, since my husband and I are doctors, we may get infected and then who will take care of the family and my three young kids? It’s tricky but my family knows that we have to be there to take care of others. As I have a responsibility towards my family, I also have a responsibility towards my patients and my family understands that,” said Dr. Spoorthi.
She said her children are very proud of her and send her off with a smile every day, even though the fear in their eyes is evident when they say “be careful, mommy.”
Shortage of beds, oxygen, medicines, manpower
Dr Spoorthi also spoke about the shortage of hospital beds and oxygen amid the surge in cases during the second wave of the pandemic. She said they receive calls all day asking for admission and they have no choice but to say no to patients due to the non-availability of beds, oxygen or medication.
“The most distressing factor during the second wave has been the rapid rise in infections and the feeling of helplessness with the limited infrastructure we have. Not being able to provide oxygen to our patients is overwhelmingly heartbreaking,” she said.
Dr Spoorthi added, “We are seeing a shortage of resources and manpower. My nurses are doing double shifts and working extra hard. They look tired. All of us are very tired. I have been managing through these difficult times by trying to surround myself with positive things. I think of all the happy recoveries. I take the time out to work out every day.”
According to indiatoday.in