COVID & HEALTHCARE SYSTEM (Psychological, Physiological & mental health of women and children)

  The Author of this blog is Mohd  Shamshad Ahmada student of 3rd year, BA LLB(H) at Faculty of Law, Integral University, Lucknow, U.P

The whole world is going through a covid-19 disease pandemic and the number of cases is increasing day by day. India is now the third worst country affected by corona virus after United States and Brazil. India sets world’s highest single day rise with 78,761 cases. And took India’s covid tally to 35, 42, 733 and total deaths to 63,498 till now[i]. And condition is getting worst day by day. The healthcare system is vulnerable at the time of pandemic.  According to data from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development available for India for 2017, India has 0.53 beds for 1,000 people compared with 0.87 in Bangladesh, 1.1 in Indonesia, 2.11 in Chile, 2.73 in Turkey, 1.38 in Mexico, 4.34 in China and 8.05 in Russia.[ii] Every patient are not getting bed especially the poor people due to increase in number of patient. Testing rate is also very slow. India has a shortage of healthcare workers. According to health ministry data released in October last year, there is one doctor for every 11,082 people, which is 10 times the doctor – patient ratio that the world health organization (WHO). The WHO mandates that the doctor to population ratio should be 1: 1,000, while India had a 1:1,404 ratio as of February 2020.     

In rural areas this doctor patient ratio is as low as 1:10, 26 doctors as per national health profile 2019.

With this kind of figures in our healthcare system it is very much difficult to tackle with covid 19 pandemic and already the current scenario shows poor planning and failure of the government in pandemic. Healthcare system has been collapsed people are not getting proper treatment due to increased in number of patient many people have already died at home. This might soon be the norm across the state.[iii]

There is also a mental health impact of covid 19 pandemic especially to the children and women they are going through a different kinds of pressure and fear in mind like loosing of life fear of their relatives dying , exam pressure in the time of pandemic  likely to be experiencing worry and tension and also resulting in depression .

Children are likely to be experiencing worry, anxiety and fear, and this can include the types of fears that are very similar to those experienced by adults, such as a fear of dying, a fear of their relatives dying, or a fear of what it means to receive medical treatment. If schools have closed as part of necessary measures, then children may no longer have that sense of structure and stimulation that is provided by that environment, and now they have less opportunity to be with their friends and get that social support that is essential for good mental well-being.[iv]

There is a psychological impact on the mind of women and children due to this covid crisis that if we found covid positive we will be taken away from family and kept all alone in isolation ward where we will unable to meet with our family members, friends and  lot of money will required in treatment also if we found covid positive then nobody will talk to me and everybody will keep distance with me and people will say that he/she is a positive patient stay away from him we will be discarded from the society. This kind of perception and fear has been made in mind of every child. Furthermore schools and colleges are been closed social gathering are also not taking place, children are living all alone in their houses very depressed their freedom and liberty is also being affected. Education system is also being affected digital learning is not very much effective, face to face interaction is usually best form of communication as compared to digital learning difficulties are been seen in online learning system and to understanding the concept easily also specially in rural areas students do not have the required infrastructure nor are financially strong to avail the resources required for digital education.  

 These nationwide closures are impacting hundreds of millions of students. Several other countries have implemented localized closures impacting millions of additional learners.[v] 

Women are also being psychologically and mentally affected as like children are fear of dying, loosing there family members fear and being discarded from the society after been found positive of covid 19 virus.  

 Incidences and reports of violence against women within the household have also risen. This points to male psychological distress due to short-term loss of work and earnings, and subsequent violent behaviour and or confinement at home with abusive partners during lockdown. As a result, in the long-run women’s psychological well-being might be affected even more adversely than men’s from financial and emotional stress, combined with physical violence.

We cannot deny with the fact that the healthcare system is been failing to tackle with the covid 19 pandemic and psychological impact of this pandemic is very serious problem and it is specially affecting the children and women. There is reform needed in our healthcare system more number of doctors are required so that Burdon per doctor and shortage could be managed as per the guidelines of WHO. An increase in number of beds in the hospitals is most important issue so that people do not suffer shortage of bed and even could not be admitted. More ventilators are needed to be build and supply to the hospitals as their numbers are very less in the hospitals. PPE kits supply needs to be more so that our doctors does not have shortage of PPE and if without proper PPE doctors will treat the patient they will have high risk of affecting the virus and if the doctors will be affected then this pandemic will become worse.

Also there is need to understand the psychology of women and children there mental health impact due to covid 19 pandemic. It is needed to talk with the children and spreading knowledge that you will not be alone, parents needs to talk to their children so that they not feel alone and depressed.

More friendly and awareness needed from the health workers that there is no need to fear and depressed with the disease and there will be no discrimination if you will found positive from this virus and you have not done anything nor your fault if you have found corona virus patient. There is nothing to worry in that, then only the fear & psychological, mental damage can be reduced among the children and women.