Four ASHA Workers Test COVID-19 Positive In Punjab, Lack Of Masks, Gloves Cited Reason

The front-line medical workers have reported shortage of basic protective gear while treating the COVID-19 patients which in turn puts their life at risk and also exposes them to the threat to being a potential carrier of the virus during interaction with the patients.

Punjab   |   4 May 2020 2:55 PM GMT
Writer : Palak Agrawal | Editor : Prateek Gautam | Creatives : Abhishek M
Four ASHA Workers Test COVID-19 Positive In Punjab, Lack Of Masks, Gloves Cited Reason

Image Credits: The Indian Express

The Armed Forces conducted aerial fly-pasts, light up the ships at sea and showered flower petals on COVID-19 hospitals in several parts of the country on Sunday, April 3.

This gesture was to express gratitude to the doctors, paramedics, health workers, sanitation staff and other front-line warriors engaged in fighting the coronavirus outbreak.

In striking contrast, the health workers and other corona warriors deployed on the ground have consistently reported their concerns.

The increasing assaults against them which led the Union government to pass an ordinance and make such attacks a non-bailable offense.

The front-line medical workers have reported shortage of basic protective gear while treating the COVID-19 patients which in turn puts their life at risk and also exposes them to the threat to being a potential carrier of the virus during interaction with the patients.

In a major development, four ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) workers tested positive for the novel coronavirus in Punjab's Moga on Saturday, May 2.

These are the lowest-paid health care workers who work on the grassroots level to conduct COVID-19 door-to-door screening, surveys and reportedly earn a meagre Rs 1,500-2,000 in a month as incentives for a list of fifty-odd approved works.

According to reports, the four workers have been currently put in isolation at Moga Civil Hospital.

One of the four, a 36-year-old called her job of 10 years as ASHA worker "thankless", and regretted not paying heed to her family's warnings during the pandemic.

"I want to say to all ASHA workers that they should stop doing this work and sit at their homes. Why should we put our lives in danger? They did not even provide us mask, gloves as we went door to door. We used to wash our hands every few minutes, took all precautions, but failed to protect ourselves," she said, reported The Indian Express.

The workers also alleged that they were not being served proper food during the period of isolation at the hospital.

One of them questioned in disappointment, she asked, "Someone should tell us how to eat cold, stale rotis and dry vegetables. This is not how we should be treated. We gave our everything fighting coronavirus at the frontline. We went door to door covering our face with dupattas, washing hands, knocking gates with our feet…Is this what we get in return?"

Reportedly, the ASHA Facilitators and Workers Union will be submitting a memorandum on Monday to NHM Director at Mohali, said the Union's state president Kirandeep Kaur.

They will be addressing issues of better pay and provision of safety gear from the government.

"Health minister has communicated today that our demands will be taken up at the Cabinet meeting. If they still aren't taken up, then we may announce strike for May 7," she said.

Also Read: Poster Prohibiting Entry Of Muslim Traders Put Up In Indore Village, Police Files Case

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Contributors

Palak Agrawal

Palak Agrawal

Digital Journalist

Palak a journalism graduate believes in simplifying the complicated and writing about the extraordinary lives of ordinary people. She calls herself a " hodophile" or in layman words- a person who loves to travel.

Prateek Gautam

Prateek Gautam

Digital Editor

A free soul who believes that it is journalism apart from politics which should stand for the social cause and environment

Abhishek M

Abhishek M

Creative Producer

" An engineer by profession, Abhishek is the creative producer of the team, graphic designing is his passion and travelling his get away. In more ways than one, he makes the content visually appealing."

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