Amid Lockdown 1st Patients’ Rights eConclave Raising Issue of “Non-Covid Essential Healthcare Services” held
Effacing stigma and panic around COVID-19, bringing normalcy, sufferings of Non-COVID patients due to lack of essential services were discussed at length
A unique of its kind 1st eConclave around ‘Patients’ Rights’ was held amid the hue and cry of COVID-19 panic. It addressed almost all the issues of ‘Patients’ Rights.’ The umbrella topic was “Are Non-COVID Essential Healthcare Services Becoming Casualty due to COVID Panic” consisting several allied-topics intact with. The eConclave was organised by the ‘healthcare advocacy’ group- HEAL Foundation in association with Sewa Bharati– world’a largest ‘social services’ organisation, on 16th May 2020 from 04:00 to 06:00 PM.
The aim of the eConclave was to bring to discussion the underlying problems the Non-COVID patients have been facing due to COVID panic. It has been seen that during the COVID hullabaloo, the non-COVID patients are the greatest sufferers. Most of the patients suffering from fatal diseases like cancer, kidney patients on dialysis and diabetes are in trouble as the essential patients’ regular health services are not being provided to them due to the obstruction in regular healthcare delivery.
Addressing the eConclave Dr Swadeep Srivastava, Founder, HEAL Foundation said,“Ever since the outbreak of COVID-19, everybody was only talking about the COVID-19 and its infection. But there was no discussion around the day to day problems that the regular patients with fatalities have been facing due to the COVID panic. A deliberate discussion was very much required around the stigma created by COVID-19 and in the post COVID-19 scenario, where the healthcare professionals, as well as institutions, will be required to address the comprehensive patient care to avoid the crisis of COVID and non-COVID patients.”Dr Srivastava further said, “In only 60 days, with over 6 Webinars & Summits, we at HEAL have done about 20 hours of ‘health education’ discussions/ deliberations involving over 75 Experts, Medical KOLs & Women Leaders & Media & Public Health Experts, including the 1st Live eHealth Summit & the 1st Patients’ Right Conclave reaching out to above 3 lac people directly. We are committed to ‘spread right health awareness from home’ & make sure that our fellow citizens do not suffer due to lack of information or due to any ‘mis-information circulated on Social Media.”
The session saw over 500 participants who had a volley of questions with them asking with each panellist. Over 10 panellists from different sectors — medico, journalist, social worker, entrepreneur, health communicators and legal experts attended the eConclave with enthusiasm & zeal and deliberated their respective stances. They passed their constructive criticism and suggested probable solutions as to how to tackle the outgoing and the forthcoming situations.
Deliberating on the essence of amity amongst different sections of society, Dr Ram Kumar, Secretary-General, Sewa Bharati said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has given us an opportunity to come together to fight this adversity unitedly. We, as a society can bring a solution to any such problem. The spirit of mutual cooperation can only rescue the sufferers and pave the way to come out from the crisis. Sewa Bharati has been working ceaselessly to provide the essentials for the survival of the deprived. Since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown, we have managed to provide meals to lakhs of people who were on the brink of starvation.”
The other speakers deliberated on the respective topics assigned to them. Dr Dipak Shukla, CEO PSRI Hospital threw light on — ‘Post lockdown Healthcare Professionals and Institutions are required to address comprehensive & holistic patient care, beyond COVID-19’; Dr G S Grewal, President-Elect, Delhi Medical Association deliberated at length on— ‘Absence of Guidelines of GOI for standalone Clinics in Pvt Sector leading to uncertainty’; Dr Yogendra Malik, National Secretary, National Medical Organisation deliberated on — ‘Stigma created by COVID-19’ needs answers from all of us.’
Deliberating on the Pandemics and how these are handled worldwide, Dr Chandrakant S Pandav, former HoD, Deptt of Community Medicine, AIIMS said, “This is the 20th pandemic and not the first. The 1st occurred in 165 AD taking away the lives of almost 5 million people. So no need to worry, take precaution, follow the preventive measure of social distancing with physical space distancing compounded with social sensitivity and enjoy every moment. The COVID-19 in modern times has given the message that the entire world is a family. Follow the Ayurvedic way of life and ensure to make your immunity strong.”
The remaining speakers like Mr Sridharan Ramkrishnan, Consulting Editor, TV-9 deliberated on — ‘Media’s constructive responsibility’; Mr Sudhir Mishra, Medico-Legal Expert on — Patients’ Rights & Access of Healthcare been compromised, how to correct it? Mr Manoj K Das, Chief Editor, Mathrubhumi threw analytically light on — ‘Role of Language Media during COVID-19 Pandemic (examples from Kerala)’ and Mr R Shankar, President, HEAL Foundation took the overview of the entire session deliberating on — ‘Essential services of Non-COVID Patients need reinstatement in a proper planned way’.
Examining the topic— ‘Doctors and Patients both suffer of COVID-19 panic: What are the solution and the way ahead’, Dr Deepak Singla, Medical Director, Maharaja Agrasen Hospital, said, “We need to come out from the COVID-19 panic and move towards normalcy as the lockdown has put the lives of the regular patients such as kidney patients on dialysis and diabetes is in trouble. The regular vaccination of children is disturbed. The society and the government must work to bounce back to normalcy retaining the essential preventive measures intact.”