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prernaPrerna Bhardwaj
Nursing Officer
Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi
 
NURSE IN CORONA A WARRIOR OR VICTIM ?

As we all know, right now, the whole world is fighting against the COVID-19 (Corona Virus) pandemic. Right now, there are 7.04M confirmed cases of COVID-19 (Corona Virus), globally. In India, number of people suffering from corona virus has reached to 277K and continuing to increase with each day. So, let’s first get to know what this uncontrollable COVID-19 (Corona Virus) pandemic is.

WHAT IS COVID-19 (Corona Virus)?

Coronavirus disease(COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by coronavirus. The COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

The common symptoms of COVID-19 are

  • High grade fever
  • Dry cough
  • Tiredness
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest pain

At this time, there is no specific treatment or vaccine for COVID-19.

To control the COVID-19, our doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers are doing their best at work so that the world can be saved from this pandemic. They are being called as ‘corona warriors’. So, let’s know what makes them ‘corona warriors’.

Stay home

NURSE - A CORONA WARRIOR

Nurses along with other healthcare workers are being called as ‘corona warriors’. Our Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi, praised nurses by calling them frontline soldiers.

Nurses are the unsung heroes who risk their lives to save others. As the COVID-19 pandemicis sweeping the world and spreading the threat, nurses are the angels who care and instil hope in minds of patients. They heal the vulnerable with their touch of compassion, soothing smile and words of care.

In the period of lockdown, when all the nurses are out there in hospitals treating COVID-19 patients, our PM Modi ji tried to encourage them with the help of people staying at home by giving them some activities, like –

  • Taali bajao, Thali bajao :
 

tali bajao

On 22nd March, 2020, everybody was asked to spare their 5 mins. @ 5pm to applaud for all the doctors, nurses and healthcare workers to encourage and salute them for their wonderful job.

  • Diya jalao appeal :
 

diya jalao

Modi ji appealed to all 130 crore Indians to express their solidarity with nation’s massive fight against corona virus, by lighting a diya(lamp), torch, candle, or mobile phone at their doorstep or in their balcony on 5th April, 2020, @ 9 pm for 9 mins.

  • Appreciation by IAF (Indian Air Force) :
 

Appreciation by IAF (Indian Air Force)

As a gratitude to all those who are serving for humanity amid worldwide crisis due to corona virus, the IAF jets showered rose petals on hospitals for treating corona virus patients across the country. IAF saluted the spirit and determination of corona warriors.

There was a flypast by Air Force from Srinagar to Trivandrum and another one from Assam to Gujarat. Corona warriors were saluted by Indian Army and Indian Navy too. Tributes were given to all corona warriors from sky to sea.

* The controversy here is,

One side all the nurses, #coronawarriors, are being respected and appreciated by everyone. On the other side, these soldiers of humanity are facing social stigma and being misbehaved & discriminated in the society. Is this how the country treats its corona warriors.?

Even though the trending caller tune of corona(which we all are tired of hearing) says, “ Hamein bimari se ladna hai bimar se nhi, kisi se bhed- bhav na krein aur iss bimari se bachne ke liye jo hmari dhaal hain jese hamare Doctors, swasthya karami aur safai karamchari unka samman krein.”

But in reality, nurses and other healthcare workers are facing some serious issues in the society which make them a victim more than a warrior.

NURSE - A CORONA VICTIM

In this pandemic of corona where nurses are serving their best to save lives of others, they are facing some serious injuries in their own. Here are few unnoticed injuries which make them victim more than warrior.

  • Physical Injury :
 

physical injury

Medical staff, treating COVID-19 patients are experiencing some serious skin injuries related to use of PPE such as masks, goggles, face shields. The skin injuries put staff at increased risk of infection with insufficient prevention and treatment. Heavy sweating and greater daily wearing time of PPE, increases the risk of skin injury.

Susceptible parts of skin injuries are nose bridge, cheeks, ears and forehead. According to scientists, long hours of wearing PPE, the N-95 mask, goggles compresses the nose bridge and cheeks. The face shield and surgical cap tends to compress the forehead leading to skin injuries on head and face.

  • Mental Injury :
 

mental injury

You all must have heard about the Tablighi Jamaat congregation at Nizamuddin markaz in Delhi. It had emerged as the super spreader of Wuhan corona virus in our country.

5 Tablighi Jamaat members were admitted in Ghaziabad hospital who misbehaved with nurses and later got arrested by police when their quarantine period was over.

It was reported that they were roaming naked in the ward, made awful gestures for female staff and sang obscene songs. They were spitting on the Doctors & nurses and harassing the healthcare workers of hospital.

These types of incidents make the staff feel low and hurt. It injures them mentally that even in this pandemic of corona where they are serving people selflessly, people are misbehaving and disrespecting them instead of being grateful to them.

  • Social Injury :
 

social injury

As we all know that man is a social animal. Society affects the life of every individual. In this pandemic of corona, nurses are facing the prejudice and eviction over fears that they have come into contact with the virus.

The neighbours and landlords of all health care workers are creating issues in the society and forcing them to vacate the area due to the fear of corona. In this pandemic, our corona warriors are serving selflessly in the hospitals and instead of being grateful to them, people are making their life even more difficult. Here we have few examples –

– One nurse, working at a Kolkata hospital, was forced by her landlady to vacate the house even though she was not having any symptoms of corona.

– A government doctor from MMCH hospital was thrown out of his rented accomodation in Behrampore by landlord.

 Psychological Injury :-

In this pandemic, the things are worsening with each day. Medical workers are facing grueling workloads and unprecedented stress each day. Psychologists say stress for frontline workers could flare into chronic psychological problems if not managed. Here we have few examples where stress took the life of healthcare workers.

– In New York, 2 medical workers of corona virus died by suicide.( Dr. Lorna Breen and John Mondello).

 

– A 34 year old nurse, Daniella Trezzi, worked in COVID-19 ICU of San Gerardo Hospital at Monza attempted suicide after knowing that she had been infected with the virus and could spread the disease to others.

 Emotional Injury :-

Due to COVID-19 outbreak, there are many nurses, Doctors. and other healthcare workers, those are already staying in hostels or rented accommodations , are unable to go to their home and see their families. They are working continuously in the stressful environment of hospital and facing problems from society. Being far from home and misbehaved by the society, makes them emotional weak.

EPILOGUE

stay home

Though all the healthcare workers are facing these problems, I have considered ‘Nurses’ as the ‘VICTIM’ here because they are the one who has always suffered from society, the most and the COVID-19 pandemic has worsen their working conditions too. Nurses are the warriors who have tied their shrouds and fighting this battle with all their courage. They are the frontline soldiers who care for the patients 24 hourly standing next to them irrespective of their conditions. So, do not make nurses the victim. Treat them well, respect them well because a nation cannot fight its biological battle if its nurses are not well.

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