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The pandemic Inequality Crisis: Apply the ‘celebrity status’ to get a bed

Well, for people who are saying Covid-19 is back, for their knowledge it was never gone. The situation is getting worse each passing day, and suddenly the mainstream media and government are ‘selectively’ awake again on a ‘deadly’ spread pandemic which was off the hook for them. The media had no interest in it because there was no TRP or it had no ‘scoop’ in it and for the government, there is no pandemic as they are hitting back to back rallies in states under polls. 

Whereas, India’s financial capital Mumbai has emerged as one of the worst-affected Covid cities in the country after witnessing a worrying surge in infections over the last few days.

On Sunday, Mumbai reported over 11,000 new cases — it’s single highest rise since the pandemic hit India. The massive surge also fueled Maharastra’s record tally of over 57,000 new infections today.

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackery had warned recently that his administration will be forced to impose another lockdown if people do not follow Covid- appropriate guidelines such as wearing of maks or social distancing. However, the Maharashtra government on Sunday announced a weekend lockdown in the state from 8 pm on Friday to 7 am on Monday in a bid to curb the growing numbers of Covid-19 cases in the state.

Maharashtra along with the whole country is going through a tough time dealing with the management of Covid-19. The Covid-19 has scratched opens the vulnerabilities of humankind. The air is enveloped with uncertainties due to the ubiquitous spread of the virus. But even tough times like such arent able to hide our uneven distribution of privileges. In times like such, when the whole world should be united to conqueror the invisible virus, we seem to have one inside us already. That virus wants to extract the resources and take leverage of being a ‘celebrity’ where the others are grappling for mere survival. 

Recently in Maharashtra, an elderly woman of 73-year-old who was COVID-19 positive took her last breath in a car. Well, you would argue that a lot of people are dying due to Covid-19. It is true, a lot of them are dying. And we cant put all the blame on the government because somewhere we also not adhere to the mandatory covid-19 norms. However, coming back to the death of the elderly women, it is heart-wrenching and worth noting down is because she with her son struggled for around 15 hours to get an oxygen bed but due to the shortage or I wouldn’t hesitate of admitting the laid back attitude at government hospitals that cost the women her life. 

Another argument which may or may not follow the above statement is — she was 73- year old, maybe someone younger is prioritized over her? Well, could be true but does a ‘celebrity status’ allows you to get ‘a bed’ for precautionary measures while the common man dies due to a shortage of beds.

According to a media report, the now-deceased elderly woman’s son said that he drove for 15 hours looking for a hospital to admit his COVID-19 positive mother but in vain. The hospitals denied admission to his mother mentioning the lack of oxygen beds, he said. She stopped breathing in the car while he was taking her to another medical facility, he added.

“I am her only son and there was no one else to take her to hospital but me. I thought I would get admitted to the same hospital as my mother, but even after visiting several hospitals, I could not get a bed for her. Her oxygen level kept dropping and she took her last breath near the Kharadi bypass signal, when we were going to the next hospital,” a report by Hindustan Times quoted the deceased septuagenarian’s son as saying.

PMC official admits bed shortage

A media report said that an official admitted that the medical facilities are staggering under a shortage of beds amid rising cases of COVID-19. The official further stated that by Monday, more beds will be available.

Meanwhile, Dr Shrihari Dhorepatil, Shree Hospital’s managing director, said that all COVID-19 beds in his facility are occupied. On Sunday, he transferred as many as seven coronavirus-infected individuals as there were no beds.

Furthermore, there is another photo viral on social media where two covid positive patients accommodated on a single bed. The catastrophic condition of the medical facilities in regards to the preparation of Covid management can be exhibited by this. Just reading about the frightening state of covid management and crisis of beds in Maharashtra can give you goosebumps. 

Picture courtesy: NDTV

According to a media report, officials say the crisis has worsened because people are crowding to government-run hospitals to avoid the hefty cost of treatment at private hospitals. Also, the doctors are referring the more critical patients to the GMCH. But the hospital’s top medical officer said the two-in-one bed situation has been resolved since the photos were taken.

“As per protocol, only moderate to severe Covid patients and most of the critically-ill being brought from outside the city are being admitted in the hospital,” said Avinash Gawande, Medical Superintendent of the hospital.

“The workload in GMCH is very high. We are increasing beds, but the situation is normal now, there is a single patient on a bed,” he claimed, according to a report. 

Nagpur has emerged as a new Covid hotspot with over 3,100 new Covid cases on Monday and 55 deaths. The total number of cases is at 2,21,997.

BMC Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal informed that the number of beds available on BMC’s real-time live dashboard for allotment has gone up from 12906 to 15971.

But amid such crisis, the ‘celebrity status’ open the door of privileges of you, not only you will be given the best treatments but a bed for the precautionary measure as well. A measure that can be done under home quarantine.

Well, you must be wondering what is this “celebrity status” omnipresent in the article refers to? The meaning of it is pretty straightforward. In times when the state is struggling with the crisis of beds and treatment of the ones in absolute need. Celebrity like Akshay Kumar who had tested positive for Covid-19 is being admitted to a hospital as a ‘precautionary measure’. Akshay Kumar was admitted to a hospital in Powai around 5 pm on Sunday evening. Confirming the same in a social media post the actor shared, “Thank you everyone for all your warm wishes and prayers, they seem to be working. I am doing fine, but as a precautionary measure under medical advice, I have been hospitalised. I hope to be back soon.”

Well, this is would have been a good responsible attempt had the times been different. But in times like these, when ordinary people are struggling and dying due to lack of beds, isn’t it unfair to occupy a bed for ‘precautionary measures’ which can be done at home quarantine with necessary medication. 

Courtesy: Dr Anjali Hood Instagram

Dr Anjali Hooda, sister of actor Randeep Hooda shared a screenshot where she says that “precautionary admission to hospital is not necessary. How will common man get beds if this is the way beds will be used”

Or being a ‘celebrity’ keep them above the struggles and value their life more than the dozen of others? The highest-paid actor of Bollywood could ease avail the facilities at home until it is absolutely necessary to be hospitalized. But how fair is it to occupy the already crunched resources for a celebrity who can have it all at his doorsteps?

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