‘Don’t Lose Hope’: ‘Covid Patients Recovering Fast in Kashmir’

Asserting that Kashmir has less mortality rate in comparison to other states, doctors say that the Covid patients are recovering fast, thanks to NGOs who provide oxygen at the doorsteps of people.

JUST when Aasiya thought life has reached a dead end, the timely medical suggestion came to the rescue of her entire Covid-19 positive family.

Before tested positive, the 28-year-old private school teacher from Srinagar along with her aged parents had suffered from throat sore, fever and cough.

Amid the growing panic created by Covid’s second wave, the trio’s test results from a local health centre freaked out Asiya.

“It was suffocating and I didn’t know what to do next,” she said. “There was no one to help us. My relatives were even scared and everyone was hesitant to come forward.”

Few hours later, she called her friend connecting her with a pulmonologist, who guided her about Dos and Don’ts.

“The doctor counselled and assured me that nothing is going to happen,” Asiya recounted. “I felt relaxed within no time, and followed his precautions and medication.”

The only thing the patients should keep in mind, Aasiya says, is “not lose hope” which gives you “positive vibes”.

After passing through a fleeting phase of mental agony, her family’s report recently came negative and recovered successfully, like many others.

“Your will power should be strong and you should think positive and follow the doctor’s advice,” she said. “You will recover quickly.”

So far, according to the daily government bulletin, over 160035 patients have recovered out of 206954 during the second wave of deadly coronavirus in the erstwhile state.

While 44307 are active positive in JK, 2612 have died (1097 in Jammu division and 1515 in Kashmir division.)

Dr. Mir Mushtaq, spokesperson of the Health Department at Directorate of Health Services Kashmir told Kashmir Observer that since the pandemic broke out in Kashmir last year a total number of 127221 positive cases were reported in valley, out of which 96970 have recovered, while 28736 are active positive cases.

“The fatality rate is 1.19 per cent, which is very less,” Dr. Mushtaq said. “Majority of people are recovering but that doesn’t mean we should lower our guards.”

Among the recovered patients is octogenarian Mohammad Yaqoob of uptown Srinagar.

Bedridden from last 10 years, the elder contracted the virus in the month of March.

Terming his grandfather’s recovery despite comorbidities a miracle, Mohammad Sharik, said, “It was heart-wrenching because the person who couldn’t even move out of his room got Covid.”

Sharik didn’t give-up and kept his entire family alert. He checked his grandfather’s saturation, was in contact with doctors and didn’t take anything lightly.

Although he was shifted to SKIMS for further treatment, Yaqoob himself didn’t give up despite his age and defeated the virus after several days in SKIMS.

“Out of average 100 patients only 17 are right now admitted in different hospitals of the valley,” said Dr. Irtifa Kanth, Junior Resident Medicine, at SMHS.

The huge chunk of 83 percent of patients, with minimum or no oxygen requirement, he says, is in home quarantine, and majority of them are recovering on their own.

“The high oxygen dependency patients are less than 20 per cent and they are admitted in the hospitals including those who are on ventilator,” Dr. Kanth said.

Quoting the official figures, Dr. Kanth said that out of the 83 per cent in home quarantine, only 5-10 per cent worsened at home and were reported to the hospitals.

“The majority of the people recover at home without any complications,” the doctor said, adding that the patients have to keep certain things in mind during home quarantine.

Apart from taking adequate fluids, he said, they should check blood sugar regularly.

“If the patient is diabetic, s/he needs complete isolation and should report to hospital in wake of breathlessness.”

Even after 5 days if the fever is not under control, Dr Kanth said, a patient has to report to hospital.

“If there is chest pain or body fatigue, report to hospital. Just be in contact with doctors.”

If all these things are followed in letter and spirit, Dr Kanth said, the patient will recover within 20 days. “The people who are recovering are very high than those who are dying,” he said.

Crediting various NGOs for providing oxygen at the doorsteps of people, the doctor said. “We have less mortality in comparison to other states of India.”

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Auqib Javeed

Auqib Javeed is special correspondent with Kashmir Observer and tweets @AuqibJaveed

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