The author, a doctor by profession, reflects her own frustrations related to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Dedicated to the Health Care Professionals, all around the world, facing the crisis of COVID-19 pandemic like brave warriors!
— Farah N Huq
There is a world wide shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for doctors and other healthcare workers treating the Covid patients right now. This created a fear and outrage within the health care community as this posed for them a formidable risk of contracting the disease. An alarming number of healthcare workers had to lose their lives during this 2020 pandemic and it is assumed that the number would rise further as the virus spreads it's deadly shadow throughout the world. The poem depicts the story of one such unsung hero who nearly lost his life fighting the battle due to lack of proper protective gear.
Update: When I wrote this, I was hopeful. I was hopeful that things will end without a sad ending. But unfortunately things are taking a bad turn. We have already lost two doctors while many more are affected.
Update: 10.6.20. The tragedy that started with Dr. Moyeen's death has now reached 29! Yes 29 of our finest doctors have lost their lives in this battle and over 1000 doctors alone have been infected in my country. It's hard to find a place in the hospital now.
Congratulations Newzealand for successfully managing the crisis. Well done!
Update: 2nd July 2020. The number of doctors who have died due to COVID 19 has reached 69 today. All gone too soon!
The PPE I Never Got!
Hospitals are on red alert
and every city is under a lock,
Distressed patients are being rushed to the ER
In large masses and in flocks.
I heard a nurse cry out for help,
One of the Covid patients needed a DC shock!
Helpless! I did feel out there.
As there were no PPE in our stock!
Standing there I took a second to figure,
Should I go near or should I flee?
My mind had only a moment to configure,
What's more important?
The Covid patient, my family or me?
Closing my eyes, I thought of the oath
I had taken,
"The health and well-being of my patient will be my first consideration",
But it also had a line I totally ignored,
"I will attend to my own health and well-being",
Something we, now, have forsaken.
In between the two lines stood my decision,
And I decided to attend to my duty in front of me,
And I held on to my oath as a physician.
I treated my patient to the best of my ability.
But I had to pay a high price for my oath,
As now, I am myself lying in a patient's bed,
Wondering, who I should hold responsible for my condition,
Worried! Who will take care of my family after my death?
Didn't the state owe us our protection,
Before sending us to the battlefield?
Doesn't the oath need some correction?
To hold the state responsible for our lives, we plead!
I suffered, I cried, I prayed in distress,
I felt my life meant nothing to the rest,
For if they had known my real worth,
They would have certainly tried to protect us to their best.
I nearly lost my life in that battle,
But was happy that I got victory!
A gallant warrior I envisioned myself,
both as a doctor and a patient,
But it seemed for this world my life was for free!
After I fought for my life in the ICU bed,
I could not help but regret.
"Between my oath and my life,
What is more valuable?" I questioned.
All I had sought was my life's protection!
For no one got to know about the death I fought,
And all for the PPE I never got!
Farah N Huq
© 2020 Farah N Huq