The mental health of Healthcare professionals heavily impacted during Covid-19 duty
There are no opinions about the threats of the coronavirus pandemic in different countries. People are scared, anxious and clueless about how far this is going to continue and how much longer they will have to wait for everything else to come in order. In India, the situation is a lot worse than other countries.
People are not only scared about how long the pandemic will continue but they are now worried about the availability of the resources. This is especially concerning given the effect of the second wave of coronavirus pandemic on Healthcare professionals. The second wave has been disastrous for the country and doctors on Covid-19 duty are under more pressure than ever.
The doctors are well aware of the situation and hence they are more concerned than everyone else sitting outside and tackling the matter. The death rate is refusing to come down in the country and the health care sector of the nation is falling on feet and this fact is a huge threat to doctors and their mental health.
It is not about how prepared doctors must be for facing such situations or how they are trained for such tough calls on the field. The problem is never changing the situation in the hospitals. There is a constant pressure to work extra, constantly having to be in masks and PPE kits even during burning weather outside. All of these are contributing factors to one’s mental health.
It has been nearly one and a half years since they have been doing all this. One of the doctors who has been on Covid-19 duty since the first wave, Dr Keerthi Krnool said, “I feel very helpless standing before a patient whom I had seen recovering in the morning and is dead before the end of the day.”
She is at present pursuing her post-graduation degree from K S Hegde Medical Academy in Mangalore and she takes care of ventilator arrangements and ICU beds in the hospital. “We knew there would be a second wave, what we didn’t expect was this rate. In order to avoid exposing more people to the virus, we work with minimal staff,” she added.
Continuously being inside PPE kits and N95 masks have started to make Kurnool hyper anxious. The doctor said that because of the tiresome process for the whole day, she even feels tired to call her parents and inform them about her well-being.
Situation about doctors’ mental health was informed by Dr Alok Kulkarni, who explained that many of his batchmates are now trying to get in touch with him seeking help along with others who felt at loss during the whole pandemic. He is a Senior Psychiatrist at Manas Nursing Home in Hubballi, Karnataka. He added that many of the doctors have complained of extreme stress, exhaustion from work and extreme anxiety, fatigue and sleeplessness.
It was revealed that during the first wave, doctors though were overworked, they were not in such a bad shape as now. With the second wave, the mental health conditions have worsened. Even the personal life of doctors has taken an outward turn and they are finding themselves in limbo this year.
He further explained that if covid situation did not improve anytime soon, many doctors will convert into patients and it would be such a bad state that they would not be able to get treated also.