Our Covid ‘soldiers’ now need more than praises

Daniel Alushula

Dr Daniel Alushula, a surgeon who died from Covid-19.

Photo credit: Pool

What you need to know:

  • This pandemic belongs up there with world wars.
  • And the health workers are the soldiers we have sent to the frontline; ill-equipped and overwhelmed.

When I remember Dr Daniel Alushula, I remember two incidents. The first was in 2019 in Meru County when we attended the Surgical Society of Kenya camp.

The second instance was early this year in a Zoom meeting on the place of surgery in the Covid-19 era. After the presenter gave all the recommendations to keep surgeons safe including hospitals having multiple surgical teams so that in case one team was exposed to the virus they would all abstain from work and self isolate, Dr Alushula asked a question: “Which teams? What of places where there is only one surgeon for the entire hospital?”

Dr Alushula’s death due to Covid-19 has been difficult for the Kenyan surgical fraternity to come to terms with.  He was such a respectful and mellow colleague. He believed in the central role of organised surgical camps as a way of giving back to the society.

This pandemic, judging by the magnitude of disruption to the social order and economic health of countries, belongs up there with world wars. And the health workers are the soldiers we have sent to the frontline; ill-equipped and overwhelmed.

Last expenses cover

It is time for us to ask not what our health workers can do to save us from this pandemic, but what we can do to save them. During war, we celebrate and honour the soldiers who have taken the battle frontlines.

What can we do for our Covid-19 frontline soldiers?

Is it time to offer them medical and last expenses cover? We would like to see actions accompany the praises. Give us PPEs, give us medical cover. Health workers are contracting Covid-19 and some succumbing to it.

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