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Health workers in Madhya Pradesh are fighting a different war

Health workers in Madhya Pradesh are fighting a different war

Published:26 May 2020

# by AG Vallabhan

The medical staff has complained of fainting and fatigue during field visits after wearing these Plastic PPE Kits. The reusable PPE kits are made up of multi-laminated fibre and anti-static materials.

Bhopal | Long gruelling shifts, field visits under the scorching sun, attacking mob, fear of the disease and contagion is what the health workers in MP are facing during these days. On the personal front, they are also fighting a different war of fatigue and mental agony. Since they are on Corona duty, most of them stay in accommodations arranged by the hospitals.
The long stint of the disease and stay away from the family is taking a toll on the fitness of health workers. More than 100 members of the Health department was Covid-19 infected in Madhya Pradesh at the start of the pandemic itself is proof of the risk involved. Three doctors have already lost their lives in Indore due to Covid-19. All over India, many health workers have been infected with Covid-19 including Delhi, Mumbai and other cities. On 24 May, the first Malayalee Nurse lost her life due to Corona infection in Delhi. 
Working condition in a Corona team of health workers is very challenging with teams formed with 2 Doctors and one Nursing staff who visit the hotspot colonies for sampling. They also take all precautionary steps like wearing Personal Protective Kit (PPE Kit), sanitisation of contacts etc done at frequent intervals. The protocol of wearing and taking out the protective gear takes minimum 30 minutes with several rounds of handwashing. The reusable PPE kits are made up of multi-laminated fibre and anti-static materials. 
WHO has classified the PPE kits to include gloves, medical/surgical face masks, goggles, face shield, and gowns, as well as items for specific procedures filtering facepiece respirators (i.e. N95 or FFP2 or FFP3 standard or equivalent) referred to as “respirators" - and aprons.
Due to the heavy demand of PPE Kits across the State which is estimated at 12000 units per day and with limited production facilities, Plastic PPE Kits are being supplied to the Medical Staff in MP, posing several health issues, including excessive sweating, palpitation, dehydration and breathlessness. The medical staff has complained of fainting and fatigue during field visits after wearing these Plastic PPE Kits. This compels us to take out the kits or open them when it becomes unbearable, said a member of one such inspection team posted in DIG Bungalow area of the old city.  
The staff manning Covid-19 treatment facilities in Hamidia and JP Hospitals are the worst affected as the staff deputed here in Corona wards have to work under the fan wearing Plastic PPE Kits in stifling summer, where the day temperatures vary between 42 -44 degrees.  The families are also worried and live in constant fear of infection. With the causalities of the medical staff increasing due to the long duration of exposure to the pandemic, their worry is comprehensible.


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