Friday, 27 November, 2020
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MISCELLANY

    Fear of COVID-19: ambulance drivers and health workers denied food, shelters on way along



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Bhojpur, May 9 : The entire world has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Its fear among the people is deepening. Subsequently, the same gives birth to humanitarian crisis as people sometimes get failed to show human behavior. The same is the case in Bhojpur, an eastern hilly district in State-1.    
We know that medical workers are at the frontline in the fight against the virus globally. It would not be an exaggeration to say that their roles are essential to serve the best of humanity during the crisis and to defeat the virus. But, in the district medical workers and ambulance drivers carrying suspected COVID-19 patients are denied shelter during night on the way to their destinations and back to homes.    
Sometimes, they face inhuman treatment just for doing their jobs as they are considered as the possible carriers of virus. Ambulance driver Machindra Rai shared that he had frequently faced discriminations for carrying people suspected of contracting the virus. ''I was even denied a glass of water. So, we have to go through non-stop travels to reach home for food and accommodation. This is a problem we are facing. It is really painful. ''    
Besides, he is also scared for his personal safety these days. As he complained, ambulance drivers are not given protective gears by authorities concerned. They are forced to buy masks and gloves on personal expenditure. ''This job turns very risky and challenging now. On the way, we are denied services in hotels and lodges and not given a glass of water by anyone while on duty. We can't have our meal on time,'' he shared the plight. According to him, it takes 12 to 14 hours to drop patients to Dharan and Biratnagar from Bhojpur and to return home.    
As said by District Health Office, Bhojpur, medical workforce mobilised for collecting swab samples from quarantines in rural parts and for other workers are not allowed to stay anywhere during night.    
The Office chief Phanidra Thapa also explained that a medical team recently reached Ghodetar to collect swabs of the suspected and arrived by the district headquarters by late midnight as the team was denied shelter there. This is due to the increased fear of COVID-19 among the people, it is said.    

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