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How Punjab’s Doctors Are Fighting Coronavirus In Life-Threatening Conditions

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An excessive shortage of protective wear and other essentials in Punjab is putting the lives of several doctors – who are fighting at the frontlines against the deadly coronavirus – in danger.

Arab News reported that doctors in Punjab have been facing severe difficulties, while treating the patients of coronavirus in hospitals and quarantine centres. The newspaper quoted Dr Nauman, the president of Young Doctors Association (YDA) Dera Ghazi Khan as saying that only the doctors who were working in shifts in the quarantined areas were fully equipped. “Others, like the doctors on visiting rounds, nurses and the janitorial staff, have been given basic face masks and a pair of gloves,” he said.

He warned that members of the medical and non-medical teams serving patients are being exposed to the virus and could become carriers. “Every day, I work with fear of getting infected, but abandoning patients at this critical hour is not an option. We [doctors] do what we have to do, in whatever circumstances,” the young doctor added.

“Doctors working with patients in isolation wards are fully equipped, but the problem is that most of these confirmed cases are identified at emergency wards or the outpatient departments. None of those people has any protection,” Dr. Salman Haseeb Chaudhry, the president of YDA Punjab told the newspaper.

However, Musarrat Jamshed Cheema, the spokesperson of Punjab government termed the doctors’ charges as ‘propaganda’, saying “young doctors are doing politics. We cannot afford to put our doctors and nurses in danger.” She said last month, the provincial government distributed 25,000 protective suits, while another 50,000 will be imported in the coming days.

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