Families across the world are feeling the pain of separation as the global pandemic keeps many apart in this trying time.
The medical personnel in all countries have become the frontline workers handling the coronavirus outbreak, which has reached a pandemic level. There are 375,498 confirmed cases and 195 countries have been affected, according to the World Health Organisation.
In different countries, people are showing their appreciation for the doctors, nurses, lab technicians, and others, in different ways. However, the sector is facing acute shortages of masks, hazmat suits, and other equipment to keep them safe.
One woman, Khadijah Ismail, a junior doctor in Malaysia, who has been treating patients infected with COVID-19 recently posted a video from her home. In the video, we see her toddler son crying his eyes out for his mother to come close to him. The little boy just wanted a hug from her but she was unable to give him that as she was home under quarantine. His father holds him in his arms while he cries for her from under the stairs. Khadijah seems to be recording the video from the top of the stairs, which would be in line with the guideline of keeping 1-meter distance.
The little boy raises his hands towards his mother while bawling and begging her to come close to him. The heartbreaking video has been shared more than 12,000 times and liked almost as many times. Her viral video showed the problems that families of medical personnel are facing. And, it's not limited to people in Malaysia.
"This is my son crying to come closer to me but I could only watch him crying as I have been advised to self-quarantine myself until my patient’s status is known. Wallahi this is so heartbreaking😢 Please Malaysians, please don’t be selfish. Reveal your status/ ill contact/traveling history to the triaging counter truthfully. Stop travelling Stop mass gathering Listen to KKM [Ministry of Health] Updated: now that the government has issued Restricted Movement Order, please please please stay at home! Don’t go anywhere. Please help us to fight this pandemic! We do not ask you to join us to be frontliners, We simply ask you to STAY AT HOME!" the doctor urged everyone on Facebook.
Doctors and other medical personnel have said that there are shortages of masks and other safety gear in the US, even though the White House has assured that the supply gaps are being dealt with, according to Politico. Healthcare personnel have taken to social media asking the federal government for more equipment. Meanwhile, state officials have asked other industries to donate masks to their local hospitals.
Thank You for your hard work & dedication despite the most difficult & challenging environment & patients U must have ever dealt with. U are all literally putting your own lives on the line for all of us. The message to everyone is simple from your colleagues in Belfast. Thank U. pic.twitter.com/2yCc6tDfbY— Topinfo (@TopTradersADVFN) March 21, 2020
"We vastly increased the supply of medical masks, and we'll continue to put a priority on making sure we are calling on industry at every level, calling on major suppliers that the president met with this week to make sure those equipment are there," Vice President Mike Pence said.
Meanwhile, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued a guidance for reuse and using alternatives to the N95 masks, acknowledging shortage. "Use alternatives to N95 respirators (e.g., other classes of filtering facepiece respirators, elastomeric half-mask and full facepiece air-purifying respirators, powered air-purifying respirators) where feasible," their official website said. "Implement practices allowing extended use and/or limited reuse of N95 respirators, when acceptable; and prioritize the use of N95 respirators for those personnel at the highest risk of contracting or experiencing complications of infection," it added.
These directives have not assured the healthcare workers but made them more anxious. "It’s the scariest thing about going to work every day," said Sean Petty, a pediatric ER nurse, to Politico, adding that his public sector hospital in the Bronx has asked for extreme rationing of masks.
Here’s mine from yesterday after only 4 hours pic.twitter.com/WHrtP2xypM— Liz Staveacre RN (@lizzys39) March 21, 2020
Meanwhile, healthcare workers are sharing selfies of themselves after pulling long shifts. Anesthetic registrar Natalie Silvey in the UK shared a photo of herself with the caption, "This is the face of someone who just spent nine hours in personal protective equipment moving critically ill COVID-19 patients around London. I feel broken – and we are only at the start. I am begging people, please please do social distancing and self isolation."
This is the face of someone who just spent 9 hours in personal protective equipment moving critically ill Covid19 patients around London.— Natalie Silvey (@silv24) March 21, 2020
I feel broken - and we are only at the start. I am begging people, please please do social distancing and self isolation #covid19 pic.twitter.com/hs0RQdvsn3
I feel your pain this was me last night on shift as a critical nurse when I went on my lunch hour after wearing a mask and all the gear and do you know what I wouldn’t be doing anything else! pic.twitter.com/o1BtcyLFPk— Emma Sterba (🅂🅃🄴🅁🄱🅉) (@84sterbz) March 21, 2020
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