Covid crisis in India : Healthcare facilities are struggling and people are losing hope

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India is battling against Covid 19 as cases are keep getting higher along countless deaths and breaking all the records in numbers. Last year in 2020, Italy was seen struggling with the virus and healthcare facilities but now it is visible that India has taken the spot. According to the number of cases, India has surpassed all the major corona affected countries including Brazil, Italy, UK, Russia and has become the second worst corona affected country. Country is currently receiving over 190,000 cases on average per day. The worst corona hit states are Maharashtra and New Delhi that are witnessing rise in corona cases every day.

25 years old Manish Negi lost his close relative recently due to covid. He said, ”My aunt called my mother saying she has fever from two days and she tested positive. We all thought home isolation can be the solution since beds are not available in hospitals and she was doing fine. Suddenly her oxygen level got down and we rush to the hospital. It took us whole day to find a bed and an oxygen cylinder.” His aunt died two days later. Manish explained the situation and the chaos in and outside the hospitals. He said, ”People are dying. When we took our aunt to the hospital, one family was mourning death of a family member at parking area alongside the dead body. There was a big que for getting a bed.”

According to the statistics, breathlessness is the major reason behind deaths in the second wave comparatively to the last year which is resulting into the shortage of oxygen in the hospitals. Eat News got a chance to talk to a doctor who has his duty in the COVID ward but due to the hospital’s policy, his identity has to remain anonymous. Dr. Sahil (changed name) said, ”Many states in India are heading towards peak of second wave of the covid. Burden on healthcare facilities is tremendous so many people will get infected.” New Delhi is already facing the crisis in healthcare facilities. Shortage of hospitals, beds, oxygen is a restless situation there. 27 years old Shruti live in Delhi. She said, ”Every time we are watching news, its scary to hear the healthcare sector which is the only hope people have in this pandemic is collapsing. Government has to do something, otherwise number of deaths will keep getting higher.”

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Shruti lost her friend’s mother past few days due to unavailability of oxygen cylinder. She said, ”I got a phone call from my friend about her mother tested positive and that her condition is not well. We all friends visited her and asked if she needs anything. They put aunty at home isolation but suddenly her oxygen level started fluctuating. We all posted regarding oxygen cylinders on our social media platform for help.” While explaining the situation and their struggle, shruti said, ”We got some phone numbers and address for the oxygen cylinders. But some address and phone numbers were fake, while one of the places we personally visited to check but till the time aunty died.”

Chief minister of New Delhi Arvind Kejriwal asked central government to step in the current situation of the state and help by increasing ICU beds and oxygen in the central government hospitals to avoid the crisis. He also claimed, the shortage can trigger major crisis in upcoming days. Dr. Sahil said, ”Because of the sudden increase in cases of covid, ICU beds are not available easily. Oxygen is being given to the patients as much as possible according to the requirement. But the situation needs a greater number of beds and ventilators. In Nagpur, around 70 to 100 deaths per day are being recorded in last couple of weeks.”

He urged people to get vaccinated as soon as possible. ”All people above 18 years of age should get vaccinated as it is most important tool to control this pandemic and deaths,” he said. On May 1, India opened its COVID-19 vaccine for the people over the age of 18. Since the drive started, website got crashed for a while due to the traffic. 19 years old Shubham said, ”I registered myself for the vaccine on the first day of registration. Yesterday I got my first dose. I am a bit satisfied that I got the appointment because I am hearing from my friends that all the centres have been booked as for now.” Shubham thinks current situation of India is worse and cannot be handled by medical team but by taking self-precautions.

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According to the World Health Organization, 46% of the new COVID cases are from India. Also, the last week report of global deaths mentioned 25% of the deaths are from India. Meanwhile internationals aids are coming forward for India. US said to provide raw materials for vaccines, oxygen, medical equipment and protective gear to the country whereas UK sent oxygen concentrators. France declared to supply oxygen to the country. In the mid of all this, Pakistan offered help of medical equipment and supplies irrespective of the tense relation and territorial disputes both the countries share.

Dr Sahil also mentioned about a new strain that has been found in India which spread very rapidly from person to person. Country is suffering already and the upcoming days are no less painful according to the experts.

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Shefali Ranawat is an Eat News correspondent in India. She want to be the voice of people. Also, she aim to be a war correspondent.


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