Surprise girls


Bengaluru reported her first case of covid-19 on March 8, 2020. For a yr now, these women have been preventing an unprecedented battle. Pragna L Krupa studies

These docs helped ship 473 infants to covid-positive moms. And so they have not taken a single day of absence for a complete yr. How’s that for a health care provider’s dedication?

An all-female staff of docs from Vani Vilas Hospital in Bengaluru, labored day and evening to make sure that covid didn’t solid an unsightly shadow on the miracle of beginning in 2020. And whereas the world labored from dwelling, these girls labored a complete yr with out taking a single time without work and gave beginning to 473 infants from co-mothers. -positive. They saved in contact with their households via video calls and left their very own youngsters within the care of different relations.

They stayed away from their households because of concern of passing on covid and met them as soon as a month after being examined.

– Dr Geetha Shivamurthy, medical superintendent, Vani Vilas

Medical superintendent Dr Geetha Shivamurthy stated her staff of 16 specialists, 20 pediatricians together with two males and 10 nurses labored a complete yr with out taking a single time without work. “They stayed away from their households due to the concern of passing on covid and met them as soon as a month after getting examined for covid. Not even a single physician or workers member working on the trauma heart with covid-positive pregnant girls was contaminated. In addition they ensured that not one of the infants contracted the virus. ”


The hospital obtained its first case of covid being pregnant on Might 8. “It was very surprising and we needed to cope with it shortly. Because it was the primary case, there was lots of stress. We adopted all of the protocols and the infant born was wholesome and covid-free, ”stated Dr Chaithra Ramachandra, assistant professor at BMCRI who dealt with the case with two different docs.

Whereas Dr Ramachandra was delivering infants, she had a breastfed child at dwelling that she didn’t see for 3 weeks. However regardless of having spent greater than six months away from her household, she says her coronary heart broke when new moms could not see their youngsters after the beginning. “We needed to separate them and present them footage of their newborns. Though the protocols permit moms and newborns to be collectively and even to be breastfed, moms feared passing on the an infection and we have been somewhat not sure in addition to these are the primary instances, ”says Dr Shivamurthy . Along with caring for pregnant girls with HIV, docs additionally had to make sure that their main contacts have been quarantined. OBG (Obstetrics and Gynecologist) HOD Dr Savitha C stated the calls for of managing covid pregnancies have been impacting docs in methods they did not assume they knew.



“The staff stayed of their PPE for six hours and after every case showered and went again to work. Since they didn’t have time to dry their hair, they lower their hair quick. It was in the course of the lockdown and no lounge was open. In order that they sat down in entrance of a mirror and gave one another a haircut.

In line with Dr Anitha GS, lengthy hours in PPE, fog glasses and repeating covid protocols like corrupted information was exhausting. “We needed to elevate our voices not as a result of we have been indignant, however to be heard over our masks,” she says.



Dr Sahana Devadas, professor within the division of pediatrics, stated that of all infants whose moms examined constructive for the illness, just one little one contracted the an infection because of the mom’s neglect. “However each recovered and have been launched after two weeks. There have been no deaths, ”she stated.

Between Might and August, Vani Vilas was the one authorities hospital to accommodate covid and non-covid pregnant girls. The staff carried out 1,635 regular non-covid deliveries, 984 caesarean sections in addition to 63 regular covid constructive deliveries and 153 caesarean sections.

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ASHA staff received out when nobody did. However each employee who knocked in your door asking about your well being has a narrative. Like Dakshayani.

Few individuals have braved the pandemic and left their houses. The one ones who did have been the entrance line staff. Amongst them, ASHA (Accredited Social Well being Activist) staff had some of the tough roles: going to residents’ houses and asking if anybody had signs of covid, the variety of individuals with co-morbidities. , get individuals to come back and are available examined. All of this sparked contempt and rejection from individuals they have been attempting to assist solely on behalf of the well being authorities.



However every of those girls had a narrative. Like Dakshayani (57) from Seshadripuram, who has visited over 600 houses and confronted his fair proportion of abuse and rejection from the individuals. “Some individuals shut the doorways in our face and instructed us to not enter their buildings. When there was neighborhood transmission, the stigma elevated. There was concern among the many viewers and so they did not wish to work together with us. We saved listening to tales about assaulted colleagues, however we did not cease. We continued to go to houses, discuss to individuals, elevate consciousness concerning the virus, and talk about security protocols. ”

Dakshyani says she went to buildings that had constructive instances of covid, with none concern. “I instructed individuals to come back and get examined within the testing camps that we had arrange, however few responded. I reside alone as a result of I’ve misplaced all of my household. I do not need anybody to be within the state of affairs I’m in at this time. That is why I’m very affected person once I advise individuals.

I reside alone as a result of I’ve misplaced all of my household. I do not need anybody to be within the state of affairs I’m in at this time. That is why I’m very affected person in advising individuals

– Dakshayani, 57, ASHA employee

Dakshyani says she misplaced her husband to liver illness in 2007, after which she joined as an ASHA worker the next yr. A yr later, his mother-in-law, unable to bear the shock of shedding her son, fell into despair and died. Quickly her stepfather additionally handed away. There have been different tragedies to come back. “My oldest son who suffered from most cancers handed away in 2016. Having misplaced my total household to well being points, I discover nice success in being an ASHA employee. I used to be residing with my youngest son who got here dwelling at some point after an argument with a lady he beloved and who consumed poison. I noticed him take it and I rushed to reserve it. However I misplaced it too, ”she says.

After visiting houses and serving to to boost well being consciousness, Dakshayani returns to an empty home. “I haven’t got anybody at dwelling ready for me. However I hope I can forestall others from discovering themselves within the state of affairs I discover myself in. ”

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Dr Lalitha Venkatesh and her husband saved their clinic open till 1 a.m. in the course of the peak of the pandemic to assist individuals who had coughs and colds however did not know the place to show

Dr Lalitha Venkatesh would not simply have sufferers ready of their clinic (which she runs along with her husband, Dr Venkatesh). The couple have admirers. And simply as effectively as a result of, for 40 years, this couple of docs have been treating sufferers free of charge or permitting them to pay as a lot as they will afford.

Throughout the pandemic, their clinic remained open till 1:00 a.m. to welcome sufferers from principally poor backgrounds.

Dr Lalitha Venkatesh

Dr Lalitha Venkatesh

“I began treating sufferers once I was 23 and hadn’t completed medical college. There was lots of demand for docs at the moment and folks have been asking me to start out my apply. I ended up opening a clinic on behalf of my instructor – just like the Vishwas clinic in Seshadripuram, Platform Highway. I did not cost a flat payment and a few individuals would give me 2 Rs at the moment. Dr Venkatesh was my oldest who guided me. At some point, I invited him as the primary visitor to my clinic and had no concept that my mother and father had organized for my marriage ceremony to him. Since we each consider within the service of humanity, we might be working late at evening.

It doesn’t matter what time of day, we all the time had dinner collectively. Beforehand, I handled sufferers in my clinic and visited Dr. Venkatesh’s clinic each different day. Due to the covid, I began seeing sufferers on the Srinivasa clinic day by day, ”says the 65-year-old physician.

She additionally labored with the well being division to offer distant consultations in the course of the pandemic. Fertility specialist Dr Lalitha says she prescribes each various and allopathic medicines.

Her husband, Dr Venkatesh SR (70), and the pressure behind the Srinivasa Clinic in Vyalikaval, accomplished his MBBS from BMC and have been posted to a personal establishment in Tamil Nadu, in the course of the early years of his apply. After a yr, he returned to city to open his clinic in Seshadripuram. Coming from a poor household, Venkatesh says he knew how tough it was to entry good medical care in case you could not pay for the cash. He due to this fact had no fastened charges for his sufferers. They may pay what they might afford, or not. “Since I opened my clinic, I’ve been working 14 hours a day. Typically I overlook to eat lunch and have it round 5:30 p.m. to six p.m. and begin seeing sufferers nearly instantly. I’d maintain my clinic open 24/7, however now I shut on Sundays as a result of my help workers want a time without work, ”he says.

Dr Venkatesh in his clinic

Dr Venkatesh in his clinic

Dr. Venkatesh has a really completely different model of treating his sufferers. “I do not shut the door when treating a affected person, or when giving an injection. There’s nothing to cover.

Between April and August, Dr Venkatesh says he noticed a rise within the variety of steps. “Many of those individuals got here from poor households. Most individuals have been afraid to go to hospitals and docs throughout covid, however they got here to see me.

Dr Venkatesh beforehand labored with Central Vitality Analysis Institute and Indian Institute of Science. Presently he’s with Bharat Electronics Restricted and Indian Phone Industries Restricted as a licensed doctor. Talking of the covid concern, he says, “I really feel like I’ve already handed my expiration date and am at the moment residing my bonus time. If we begin to relaxation, rust units in. Pandemic or not, my service is not going to cease. ”


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