In these ghastly COVID-19 ridden times, one thing can be said for certain: that there’s panic and more of it with each passing day. The queues outside the hospitals are seemingly never-ending. But what’s ceasing to exist is the availability of oxygen cylinders. When there’s finally confirmation about a COVID patient having the luck of being admitted in a hospital, then there strikes new concern regarding the availability of beds. The doctors are swamped with work, the patients with mounting bills and concerns. And in midst of all of this, the opposition party to the ruling BJP is calling for the ongoing strife to be declared a national healthcare emergency.
Without there being a reasonable space of doubt, it can be mentioned that the financial capital of the country Mumbai is laden with its own set of problems, with Maharashtra being among the worst-hit states in India.
First there came night curfew and then, a fresh lockdown in the very city that hardly sleeps and remains ever-active: Mumbai.
And now in the midst of all of this, it appears that the cities of Mumbai and its neighbouring Alibaug are dealing with a fresh crisis. Wondering what is it all about?
The main worry at the ground level is that the experts are of the opinion that despite there being curbs on movements, there are large crowds at essential places with the city joining hands in the fight against COVID.
But this leads to a prominent question.
Just where are these long queues in and around the city? To that end, it’s important to note that the long queues exist at not only the vaccination centres but also at testing sites. These, one may note, are essential pillars to rally and fight against the deadly pandemic.
That being said, in midst of this chaos, a doctor practicing at a facility in Navi Mumbai threw light on the menace in the city, stating:
“The core issue that is getting ignored at this moment is the large turnouts at vaccination and testing centres which do not have any exit time practice.”
And that’s not all; he’d further add, “It is also a fact that these set-ups do not have any yardstick to ensure stringent adherence to COVID protocols. Moreover, the spread of the infection through urinals and toilets at these centres is also a concern as they are not sanitised after every use.”
Moving on, what are the further troubles being faced by Mumbai and Alibaug during times that are marked by incessant tensity?
The general feeling at hospital services, which also include testing and vaccine delivery points are lagging in the most basic compliance with COVID safety norms, such as-
- Correct usage of masks
- Regular washing of hands
- Maintenance of 6-foot distance
- Usage of sanitizers
The ensuing trouble sees people needlessly standing in queues and loitering around.
The trouble with the above is that such environment becomes an ideal transmitter of the troubling infection and that is how cases rise and spread further.
On the other hand, it is not that the doctors do not face any stress or trauma, believe it or not. Facets like being clapped for hours, thus being hero-worshipped a day only to see tens of hundreds of individuals simply ignoring the COVID protocols such as pure denial to wear masks the very next day lead to a negative frame of mind.
There’s a sense of betrayal and hypocrisy that hurts the medical professionals.
But returning back to the original problem of large swathes of crowd, State Minister Aditi Tatkare, who also happens to be the Guardian Minister for the district of Raigad, is implementing important measures to tackle the mess. An intentional move to separate the vaccination area from the testing centre is one of the measures being currently undertaken to tackle the huge problem of crowds.
Such measures can lead to a decentralisation of work and reduction in crowd gathering in one place, such a boon especially for the elderly citizens who are more prone to contracting the virus (impaired by weak immunity).