Mysuru’s COVID Medical Warriors go home after 24 days
COVID-19, News

Mysuru’s COVID Medical Warriors go home after 24 days

April 29, 2020

Mysore/Mysuru: Doctors and nursing staff drenched in sweat after wearing critical care Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for long hours personify the heroism of Coronavirus pandemic. They put themselves in harm’s way to treat their patients.

These doctors and medical staff have gone through a tough time during the fight against the pandemic and they have not gone back home for many days and were spending their off-duty hours in hotels arranged by the Mysuru District Administration. Though they have been provided comfortable accommodation, it was not a substitute for home and family.

Away from their families, these doctors and healthcare workers are fighting at multiple fronts like warriors. Today in Mysuru, the first batch of 16 doctors and nurses who treated infected patients at the designated COVID-19 Hospital (District Hospital) on KRS Road went home after undergoing their mandatory 14-day quarantine.

These doctors and nurses worked in shifts at the Hospital for 10 days and stayed in 14-day quarantine at Hotel Rajalakshmi Comforts on New Sayyaji Rao Road. Yesterday eight members of the batch left to their homes while today, eight more members reached homes, happily.

Shifts of eight hours

More than 50 medical practitioners, over 75 non-medical professionals and a host of support and cleaning staff are functioning 24X7 at the COVID Hospital. These men and women work in three shifts of eight hours each under stringent procedures.

The staff treating positive patients in shifts cannot eat or even drink water for eight hours once they wear the PPE. If a doctor or a nurse or a paramedic completes one eight-hour shift, they are not immediately assigned to another shift. They are given a break of two shifts and then put on duty. Once their duty schedules are over, they are put under mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Real warriors

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Among the warriors who went home this morning were K.R. Hospital staff nurses Vanamala, H.N. Prabha, K.M. Vanaja, Bhagyavathi, D. Sheela, S.K. Prameela, A.V. Veena and Gracy. They were given a warm send-off by hotel owner S. Ramesh, K.R. Hospital Blood Bank In-charge Dr. Manjunath, T.S. Ravindranath, Santhosh Kumar and Revanna of Lions Club. The nursing staff were given fruits and groceries as a goodwill gesture.

Speaking to ‘Star of Mysore’, Vanamala said that she was asked to report at the COVID-19 Hospital on Apr. 6. “I was really scared and apprehensive on doing the duties there and the first day was difficult as I was wearing the PPE. From the third day, I got used to it and liked the work I did. We used to interact with the patients and make them comfortable. The patients depended on us and doctors for even their small needs and I was happy to help,” she said.

 Immense work satisfaction

“We all loved the work and got enough encouragement from the patients. All arrangements by our superiors and the District Administration at the hotel and at the Hospital were good and even we could take care of our health while treating the infected patients,” she added.

“It has been 24 days since I have not seen my family members. But I have immense work satisfaction and I will spend a day with my loved ones and return to work tomorrow,” said Vanamala with a broad smile.

COVID-19 patients face a difficult situation. “We assured them every day that we are trying to save their lives. We are there because we have to be with the patients and it is our job. The patients are there because they are patients. It is hard for both the patients and the nursing staff. But we managed,” she said.

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