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‘I draw strength from docs who work on the frontline’

The ongoing lockdown has forced many of us to alter the way we go about our daily routine. Chennaiites share tales of the changes they’ve made to adapt to the new ‘normal’ of living and working with limited interaction.

‘I draw strength from docs who work on the frontline’
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Chennai

I am a big advocate for teleconsultation. I have been consulting various patients, both in Chennai and pan-India. I usually spend three hours on consultations daily.

Most of them either have urgent issues or need reassurance. I do my best to tell them to stick to hygiene standards during these times. For pregnant women, they are concerned about transmission, and I do my best to relieve their concerns. I find that most feel better after a consultation. I attended to three women who delivered during the shutdown. We take them to specific nursing rooms in specific hospitals and ensure that we are wearing the right personal protective equipment.

They would usually call with symptoms on contractions and we send a nurse down to them and prepare for delivery. We tell the parents to exercise strict hand hygiene, but aside from that, they can handle the baby. Most mothers are concerned that they won’t be able to hold their child. Over the last 25 years of my practice, I have never come across a similar situation. My uncle, who is 82, has also never seen such things.

Even the Emergency and China War did not look like this. As a doctor, this is a different time, but we need to keep adapting and adjusting. As much as patients need reassurance, so do we. Among the doctors’ fraternity, we hold several webinars on various topics, including best breastfeeding practices during this time. A consensus is necessary to adopt a practice, and so we try to think of the best solutions. Personally, I draw strength from the doctors who are working on the frontline, who are not only treating patients but go above and beyond to reach all those they have come in contact with. My patients enquire about my health. It’s sweet.

- Dr Meera Raghavan (42), Senior consultant and neuro gynaecologist

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