UK doctors through phone help homeland fight COVID scourge
Coronavirus Update, News

UK doctors through phone help homeland fight COVID scourge

May 21, 2021

By M.B. Pavan Murthy 

Call Telecare facility for consultation on 0821-2420112 / 0821-2420113 

Mysore/Mysuru: As Mysuru is ravaged by a crippling COVID-19 wave, members of the Indian diaspora are struggling to find ways to help. One group among them is especially distressed: Doctors. They have reached out to their native land to help patients through Tele-care and Tele-counselling facilities. And technology has facilitated this reach out programme that is seeing good results. 

While Mysuru has been facing acute shortage of doctors – a similar situation in Karnataka and India – there has been a rather huge export of doctors to foreign shores where the medical professionals have migrated for greener pastures. Now it is the same team of doctors that is coming to the rescue of COVID patients back in their homeland. 

A COVID Telecare facility has been established in city by the Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) exclusively for over-the-phone consultations where patients in Mysuru consult NRI doctors and a team of local doctors in Mysuru. The Telecare facility is at Ideal Jawa Rotary School on JLB Road that has been set up in association with Rotary Mysore, Citizen Forum, GSS Foundation and Young Indians Mysuru. 

God response

The facility has been in action since May 12 and the response from both patient side and doctors side is good. Over 150 calls are received per day where doctors advise patients on maintaining good health, positivity, medicine routine and also counselling. The Telecare facility is just not limited to calls and counselling. The volunteers here purchase medicines to needy patients and even deliver them to the doorsteps. This service is free of cost. 

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The facility has a team of doctors who are staying in UK and whose roots are in India. Leading the team of doctors from the UK are Dr. Girish Vashista and his wife Sumana Girish. Dr. Girish Vashista is working as an orthopaedic surgeon at a reputed hospital, Sumana is a homemaker and it is Sumana’s initiative to provide over-the-phone consultation. 

Free consultation as per time zone

“The Telecare facility is provided whenever the doctors are free and as the team of doctors is big, the calls are constant. As of now, 10 doctors are offering their services and from next week 45 doctors will offer free consultation and medicare guidance,” Sumana told Star of Mysore over phone from Britain. 

“We are in a situation where we have the skills to help, and yet unable to do so. It upsets me a lot because I think if I do not serve my homeland, I will be failing in my duties,” she said. The team from UK functions as per the time zone and the team comprises field specialists. “I would want to mention the services of  Dr. T.S. Amarnath who provides consultation from 3.30 am to 6.30 am that coincides with Indian time from 8 am to 11 am. Later, he leaves for his regular duties,” Sumana revealed. 

The Telecare facility at Ideal Jawa Rotary School on JLB Road that has been set up in association with Rotary Mysore, Citizen Forum, GSS Foundation and Young Indians Mysuru.

 Debunking misinformation

The team focuses on ways to help from afar. One is through their research which focuses on making medical communication accessible to the pockets of society that are usually alienated by it. “Basically we are airing information about COVID-19 and this information is based on practical experience, debunking misinformation. We clear doubts related to the disease, its treatment, ways to prevent it, and the vaccine,” she said. 

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Among the information included in the conversation are guidelines on whether to seek immediate medical attention for Covid-19 patients, in order to avoid unnecessary hospital rushes. The team offers consultations to patients seeking second opinions from specialists.

Medical kits and home isolation kits

“With a shortage of doctors and panic about the Coronavirus taking over, many patients find themselves in a situation where they test positive and don’t know whether to go to the hospital or just care for their symptoms at home,” explained Rotary Mysore Past President Chethan Vishwanath. The doctors provide consultation on home isolation, medication and overall counselling. 

Each doctor working at this facility has been provided SIM cards to interact with patients and after consultation, the medical kits and home isolation kits provided by the MCC is distributed among the patients, Chethan Vishwanath said. The Telecare facility has eased the pressure on the War Room and there are plans in the higher level to provide more resources to Telecare facility and further decrease the burden of the War Room.

ONE COMMENT ON THIS POST To “UK doctors through phone help homeland fight COVID scourge”

  1. Arun says:

    Kudos to all doctors and well wishers from India and overseas who are doing their best to alleviate sufferings of fellow Indians in their fight against Covid. Their efforts are commendable and News worthy. All the very best to them and a big thanks from bottom of my heart.

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