A Doctor’s Plea: “What If I Die Of Covid?”
I am no one to say I am at more or less risk of dying of Covid , but yes as a physician I see a fair share of sick Covid patients in the Covid unit , dialysis unit and outpatient area. What I do know is we take decent precautions from the moment we enter our hospital, with a handwashing sink and soap solution, wearing our KN95 masks, which we seldom take off and only when alone in our clinics or when eating , that too often in isolation.
Additionally we attend learning and teaching sessions with physical distancing and fully masked. When we enter a covid ward we wash our hands with antiseptic soap, wear a pair of gloves ,then fully gown up , wear a second pair of gloves, to tether over our gown sleeves , wear a head cover, wear an extra mask over the KN 95 one and don our face visor, say a prayer and enter the Covid ward. Here one sees some very sick, intubated patients, mostly calm through sedation, others on high level positive pressure non invasive ventilation with high flow oxygen and still others in various states of oxygenation. Some we assess and arrange specialized dialytic therapies for and others we adjust /remove fluids for, depending on under or over hydrated states.
When we come out of the covid unit, we remove our gown, gloves, head caps and outer masks and get an aide to decontaminate us front, back, head to toes and are ready to retrace our steps back to our clinics. This routine may be repeated more than once and then at the end of the day, we come home and get rid of our clothes carefully , take a shower , mask up to meet our families.
At the same time, in parallel a significant majority in my city walks around in troves, sits by the wayside enjoying tea, hug each other and shake hands and go into the offices , markets , masjids , often fully unmasked, with no physical distancing, standing shoulder to shoulder, heels to heels .To top it all, they go to political rallies with the same nonchalance befitting a toddler with child like abandon , coughing and sneezing their droplets at several thousand meters a second , often as carriers of Sars cov 2 ,which at about 10 percent positivity has once again crossed the dreaded R0 factor associated with exponential spread of Covid-19.
So my friends as indeed I will die one day, it is very possible that I and several colleagues, even more directly at risk than I , succumb to this or any subsequent wave of covid.
When a post hoc analysis is done for all the hundreds of healthcare professionals who continue to succumb to the dreaded virus, I believe it would not be rocket science to determine the origins of our personal killer virus. I rest my case…