Nation’s Collapsing Healthcare System
Hospitals across the country are so ill-equipped that there is not only a shortage of vaccines, oxygen, ventilators and beds and the medical staff overworked, but the medical facilities are also not equipped properly to tackle any fire incident, which could lead to the death of patients and medical staff including doctors. The Centre’s awesome election machinery, which had the Prime Minister and the Union Home Minister spend almost every alternate day at huge rallies and road shows for almost a month while ignoring the COVID-19 situation in the country and the health infrastructure, is now unable to efficiently tackle this major problem of the pandemic in public interest. Imagine the state of mind of the hapless relatives of patients, who are running from pillar to post and helplessly watching their loved ones dying! Why cannot the Centre control and distribute or rush supplies equitably where required even after direction from courts to pull up socks and act swiftly? Why are we not having free vaccinations for everyone with no confusion of public/private and no different procedures and prices? It is ridiculous to see how time is wasted politicking with the states crying shortage of vaccines and the Centre saying there is no shortage. The PM Cares fund and all funds should prioritise the fixing of this serious problem, as it is a matter of life and death for which the government has to take the responsibility; all other plans can wait. It is a shame that the chief executive officer of Serum Institute of India, which manufactures the Covishield vaccine, has to take shelter in the United Kingdom at this critical juncture due to vested interests wanting priority at any cost.
JOHN ERIC GOMES, PORVORIM
Let’s Work Towards Overcoming COVID Crisis
The second wave of COVID-19 has precipitated an unforeseen health emergency in the country. Regrettably, India, which seemed to have successfully controlled the COVID-19 infections and deaths and also begun with the vaccinations, suddenly plunged into the second wave. As per some projections, there will be over 30 lakh infection cases in May. The pandemic has once again adversely affected the lives and livelihoods of people in the country. Sadly, alongside the surge in infection, accusations are also being made by political leaders. People, who once praised doctors and nurses for their sincere efforts in combating the disease are now criticising them and even manhandling them and vandalising hospital properties over the death of their dear ones. Politicians, as usual, are trying to take advantage of the situations. In this time of crisis, the world community has come forward to help India. Countries like the US, France, Germany, Russia, New Zealand and so on are providing enormous help to India. It is a gesture of their good intentions and a morale booster in the global fight against COVID. Our leaders must realise the gravity of the crisis and work towards overcoming it. This is not the time for blame game, accusations or judgements. We must set an example and show unity and strength at this time of a national health emergency.
VENU G S, KOLLAM