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Besides COVID -19 , Mental health issue and other diseases should also be provided health care access

Fighting Coronavirus invasion is a top priority for all the countries across the globe with the number of fatalities reaching 88,528 and as many as 1,519,066 infected by the deadly virus. The number of fatalities in India alone reached 183 due to COVID -19 with active positive case of 5228 as recorded till today noon. Like every country, India too is gearing up every possible measure to contain the virus from spreading in the country and leaving no option the country has been put under complete lockdown.
For the state of Manipur, the kind of initiative taken up by the state government in compliance with the directives of the Central government is commendable. This newspaper yesterday reported that the state is prepared to face any challenges of COVID-19 if in case the number rises. And with the dedicated service of the health workers under the strict surveillance of the Chief Minister and his team, one among the two COVID -19 positive patients has been recovered. The recovery of the first COVID-19 case who has been undergoing treatment at JNIMS shows sign of relief to the people. Now the state recorded only one COVID-19 positive case and he is undergoing treatment at the RIMS isolation ward. Persons who have been speculated to have been communicated with the virus through the 2 positive cases were all under quarantined and what is important to note down is that no person who was closed to these persons was not affected by the virus. Still, then all those suspected are under quarantined. Besides, there are over 200 suspected persons who have a travel history of visiting the affected countries are being quarantined and so far no report of the positive case has been found.
Now, it is 18 days, that the state of Manipur has been put under complete lockdown freezing all movement and business transaction except for the essential commodities. Whether some people satisfied or not the state government is working with extreme seriousness to make sure that every citizen does not remain hungry during the lockdown period.
But one thing that the government seems to have forgotten is that before the invasion of the Coronavirus almost all hospitals including the private hospitals were packed many times. These people who visited hospitals either at RIMS or JNIMS or any other private hospitals have some kind of illness and for that matter, they came for treatment.
Why did all the hospitals bore with much fewer patients in these hospitals? Does that mean that after the Coronavrus there are no other illnesses in the state? Or is it because those patients in need of consultation from doctors do not know where to go as most private hospitals have been close for outpatient treatment.
Well, state health department authority under the supervision of Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and his team is doing well to deal with the COVID19 cases. While doing so they should plan alternative measures for common people’s health service excess that are not related to the COVID-19 cases.
Except for one private hospital – the Shija Hospital and research center, even the hospital run under the state government seems to have taken up measures to provide health service facilities to patients who are not related to the COVID-19 case. This newspaper today reported on how the Shija Hospital and research center has been taking up a measure to make sure that patients unrelated to COVID -19 case could be treated in the time of need. But the management of these private hospitals is taking the matter with extreme seriousness. For those emergency patients, they provide a phone no. +91 6033 834 723 for registering a patient first so that they make sure that people in their hospital complex are safe from the virus if in case.  Those with mild problems were advised through the phone.
The state health department authority should immediately take up measures to provide health care service which are not related to COVID-19 case. It’s better than the government authority makes no mistake even at the time of crisis.
Another serious problem that the state needs to prepare is to face the mental health problem of the people due to the prolong lockdown. Some country including India and states like Manipur seem to have forgotten about the impact on mental health due to the lockdown and social distancing. In New South Wales in Australia Psychiatrists and mental health-related consultants are working out to face the probable impact on the mental health of the public either during the lockdown period.
This part of the health issue should not be let down. Remember we are living in a society and lockdown is only a short term measure and the world will run again as soon a cure for the virus is invented. And people’s mental health status is an important issue in the running of society.

Rinku Khumukcham

Rinku Khumukcham, Editor of Imphal Times has more than 15+ years in the field of Journalism. A seasoned editor, was a former editor of ISTV News. He resides in Keishamthong Elangbam Leikai, with his wife and parents. Rinku can be contacted at [email protected] 

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