The second Covid-19 wave has hit us hard. There has been a severe increase in mortality rates. According to the reports there has been a huge increase in the shortage of beds, oxygen and essential medical supplies all across the country. To bring this worsening situation under control, Dr. Kalpana Nagpal along with Mr. Sadanand Reddy and team started a centre for covid care in Amar Colony, New Delhi.
Community plays a crucial role in controlling the surge of rising Covid-19 cases. It’s not only responsible for making people aware but serving the people of the community when in need with willingness and experience. Dr. Nagpal is a senior consultant who has an experience of more than 20 years of being a robotic surgeon of the department of ENT head and neck surgery at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital. She has collaborated with Mr. Sadanand, MD Gold Star health care company Pvt. Ltd and converted Saraswati Bal Mandir, a government school, into a covid care centre to treat corona patients free of cost.
Their team was invited for a LIVE session on CitySpidey on May 20 to discuss how communities can collaborate with medical experts to open such makeshift hospitals, and how these covid care centres have helped people receive timely treatment and saved lives.
On being asked how a community can come forward and start a covid care centre, as that’s the need of the hour, Dr. Nagpal said, "Firstly, it’s the willingness and secondly one must consult experienced medical practitioners, it’s important to plan a set up.”
She also added that the doctors and the nurses should be paid well at such centres and their incentives should be taken care of, whereas the patients must be treated free of cost, hence the role of administration is very crucial.
"At the Amar Colony covid care centre, the little intriguing details such as arranging beds, oxygen cylinders, and handling gas connections has been taken care of by Mr. Sadanand Reddy, " she added.
Mr. Reddy and young volunteer Mr. Akshit Tyagi have been taking care of the administration by compiling the medical bills and essential supplies.
Dr Nagpal said that the Amar Colony covid care centre is a makeshift hospital that runs on Apollo’s protocols and follows standard treatment policies. The centre admits mild/moderate Covid-19 cases only.
The centre doesn’t admit critical Covid-19 patients as there’s no ICU backup. The patients are monitored by doctors and nurses, necessary lab tests are done and needful medications are being availed to the patients free of cost. In some cases the patients were even availed of Remdesivir. Recently when Delhi witnessed rainfall, blankets were distributed to comfort the patients.
She added that the covid care centre is open for everyone irrespective of their cast, creed, gender, origin. It’s for the poor patients who can’t afford treatment and for those who are not able to find beds in hospitals.
When CitySpidey asked the doctor how communities can help in facilitating the process of vaccination, Dr. Nagpal said that it could play a crucial role and looking into the current scenario she agreed that it’s important to have vaccination centres at every street/colony. She said that no matter which vaccine it is, it’s important for all citizens irrespective of their age to get vaccinated.
The doctor said she is willing to turn a part of the covid care centre at Amar Colony to be a vaccination centre, which can vaccinate hundred people a day. She voiced out to local MLA through the platform requesting permit once the vaccinations are availed in enough quantities.
Sharing her views on the lockdown Dr. Nagpal said that it wouldn’t be important if people followed strict covid protocols and social distancing norms and did not take wearing masks lightly. There must be proper sanitisation.
During the discussion Dr. Nagpal also talked about the rising cases of black fungus or mucormycosis. She said some of the symptoms are numbness in face, jaw, head, or in the mouth. Any pain in the oral cavity, teeth, tongue and blurred vision could be caused by this disease. She further said that the covid recovered patients are more prone to this disease. Patients who took high doses of steroids are more prone as high doses suppress the immunity.
One must never take medications without a doctor’s guidance and prescriptions. It’s necessary to take care of personal hygiene, change masks regularly, wash them thoroughly and dry them under the sun.
"That no symptom should be treated lightly, one must consult the doctor online and fixing appointments online is better than trusting WhatsApp university," the doctor added.
CitySpidey viewers made the session more interactive and fruitful by asking their questions to the team. Anjali Verma, a viewer, asked, “Are there any consequences of vaccinating a diabetic person?" Dr Nagpal answered that it’s safe, and it’s important for everyone to get their vaccinations done. Vaccination is to prevent covid-19.
To get reliable information/help on covid-19 either consult a medical practitioner online or one can refer to Apollo hospital covid-19 text book that’s even available on Amazon.
In the LIVE session, the team showed the viewers a glimpse of the covid care centre that they have been managing. They shared how covid affects a patient mentally and that it’s important to take care of their mental health as well.
To help patients cope with the disease mentally, the doctor and her team have been celebrating birthdays of patients and staff members. Patients witness the celebrations from their balconies and sing along the birthday song. A yoga teacher visits the centre every day to help patients relax themselves even further.
We need more such communities to come forward and help the community in such tough times.