With the entire world reeling under the pressure of COVID-19, the Indian healthcare system is crumbling to deal with the lakhs of cases coming in every day. The threat that the virus poses to each one of us is clear as day.
However, in this situation, we must ask ourselves the question of how we can overcome this predicament when human lives are at risk. We need to defeat these obstacles together as a community and continue the fight against the novel coronavirus.
Why is the Indian Healthcare System Failing?
Although one should expect that after over a year of coronavirus, the healthcare system across the country would have been much better equipped to handle the situation, the reality, unfortunately, fell very short of expectations. Firstly, is the fact that the fear of coronavirus has started subsiding in our country.
With administrations relaxing COVID safety protocols across public places, and the overall population adopting a very relaxed and careless attitude, as soon as we started letting our guard down, the virus started rising again. This second wave was able to cripple the hospitals because India’s high population made the caseload unbearable, with thousands scrambling for hospital beds and treatment.
The Current Situation in India
With the beginning of May in 2021, not much has changed in the country. It is very unfortunate to see reports of over 4 lakh people contracting the virus every day. The healthcare system is plagued by a shortage of supplies and medication to treat the patients.
Fatal incidents are piling on and totally occupying crematoriums. With our condition under such peril, help is pouring for India from across the world, and hopefully, the situation will ease up in the coming few weeks.
But it is important for us to understand we can only defeat the virus and we are able to successfully overcome these challenges that the healthcare system is struggling with.
Perhaps the biggest worry on everybody’s mind is the fact that there is an acute shortage of medical oxygen for treating the COVID patients. Medical oxygen is a highly concentrated form of oxygen that is used to treat patients who have low oxygen saturation levels causing difficulty in breathing.
As COVID-19 is a lung disease, breathing troubles are the first critical symptom that ends up attacking most patients. With so many new cases coming into hospitals every day, they found it difficult to fulfill that demand. The nation currently has a production capacity of 7300 metric tons of oxygen while the current caseload demands a supply of 6600 metric tons and above.
Although on paper we have a greater supply, a much bigger chunk of the supply of oxygen is taken up by industries and businesses. For whatever is left, the greatest challenge is the logistics of getting oxygen to the various hospitals around the country. A great way to deal with it is to use oxygen concentrators. These can be used at home and you can also buy Oxygen Concentrators both offline and online for emergencies.
COVID-19 Shortage of Medicines
Even after providing the necessary oxygen, patients still need to be treated for their illness. Sadly, there is a huge shortage of drugs and medicine that are being used for this purpose. Earlier you used to be able to buy medicine online to get the best prices, but now people have to scavenge for every resource and lead to get the needed drugs.
Remdesivir which is an antiviral medicine has become the subject of much controversy as it has become one of the most demanded medicines, even being hoarded and sold in the black market. Other medicines such as Dexamethasone and Convalescent Plasma are also in short supply. To fix this problem, the overall availability of the medicines needs to be addressed. Firstly, production should be boosted and made more available. Secondly, simply making more medicines is not enough, Governments also need to ensure that middlemen and black marketers do not hoard the medicines and create an artificial scarcity, shooting up prices.
COVID-19 Vaccination Drive
The only way out of this problem is to ease the caseload by ensuring that fewer people contract COVID-19. Due to poor supply chain and implementation of inoculation drives combined with a huge amount of public mistrust and superstition, the required vaccination goal has failed to meet the mark.
What is needed at the moment is to rapidly send out vaccines across all the cities and to ensure that as many people as possible are vaccinated. Covaxin and Covishield have both proven effective in dealing with the virus and the Government is also importing Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine to help meet the demand. After the wave of continued vaccinations across a few months we can hopefully start seeing an overall fall in the number of active and new cases and more and more people start becoming immune.
How Can We Reach These Goals?
- With our challenges all set, there are a few things that need to be done in order to rapidly take charge of the situation and solve it from deteriorating.
- Firstly, the national fund has to be funneled into plugging the resource shortage that the hospitals are facing. By easing the pressure on hospitals and the people for procuring beds, oxygen, and medicines, life can be made easier for a lot of people.
- The next course of order is to rapidly implement a strong vaccination drive for the entire population to help quickly build immunity and curb the rising caseload.
- Many countries are coming forward to provide help to India during this crisis. Communicating and coordinating with them to ensure a smooth and hassle-free transfer of aid resources is the need of the hour.
- Lastly, there are a huge number of political differences that need to be overcome. With both sides of the political spectrum of the country blaming each other, they must unite to fight Covid.
- Hopefully, with all of these measures, we are able to overcome the huge threat that is before us. Until then, remember that your safety is in your own hands. Stay home, get vaccinated as soon as possible, and if you must head outside then wear a double mask and stay sanitized.
Deepak Chheepa has been specializing in Digital Marketing. He currently works as the Digital Marketing Executive at Ubuy India. He loves to write articles about different topics to share his thoughts, ideas and knowledge with the world.