The coronavirus pandemic has started to take its toll on Nepal. The increasing number of patients and increasing, albeit slow, deaths, have really made a scary atmosphere. The slow growth of the financial crisis has started to make people feel anxious more than ever. The whole population has started to suffer the consequences of the pandemic and the limitations it has brought not only in freedom but to other aspects of life. The poor population has been hit the most.
From a different perspective, there are those facing head-on with the virus and needs eulogized. These front liners have compromised their freedom to a degree which only the fellowmen could fathom. Working wearing layers of attire, soaked in their sweat, holding their biological needs of thirst, and a worth mentioning, bathroom, these people are working day in and out, hoping that if their deeds are rewarded with the life and betterment of the patients they care for.
What is the society giving them to encourage them, so that when their turn comes next, the zeal of these front liners remains the same so that the quality of their treatment is never compromised? Of course, these pure souls give their everything taking it as a duty for the service of mankind. Who has remembered the 26-year-old nurse from the UK, who lost her leg due to cancer because she chose not to think of her pain, and got a diagnosis for 2 months, and continued her duty for there were a lot of Coronavirus patients and few staff to look after them? This is just an example of how committed these people are, and being a doctor, I can assure that this feeling is shared across the globe.
But these virtues should never be used for the sake of their exploitation. The recent feeds have been teeming with the news of how the doctors and nurses are treated. People coming in groups asking to boycott the doctors and nurses from the society just because they are working in the hospital, have been exposed to the virus and staying in isolation in their local residence. How can humanity stoop so low? Has their selfishness teamed up with their delusions that they will never be infected? Instead of the support that their tired body and mind needs, they are adding up the stress onto them.
Turning towards the government for help and support is something people used to do in the “ancient” times here in Nepal. The recent events of the government making different rules regarding health sectors have clearly reflected the unlettered nature of them. However, no matter how corrupt, how inexperienced and boastful the government might be, the trust that the pain and suffering of not just the patients and poor population the pandemic hit so hard on, but also the work and home condition despite which, these front liners are working, might just evoke tiny humanity left in them, is something we still have to look after.
Dr Sharma Ghimire is working at BPKIHS.