Just as the second pandemic abated in UK and there was an air of optimism with restaurants and theatres opening. We here in UK had just about started seeing light at the end of the tunnel. The Indian second wave of Pandemic struck with such intense effect. The underbelly of India’s poor health care coupled with the lack of infrastructure lay exposed with images of choked hospitals, empty oxygen canisters, parking lots converted to crematoriums and bodies floating on holy rivers. The Apocalypse unravelling left people feeling numbed and helpless.
Isaac Newton once said “he has seen further by standing on the shoulders of giants”. We at BAPIO experienced this in the response we had from our senior leadership who proved their mettle by agility of their response in working closely with medical students, trainees, doctors of all levels in galvanising and organising targeted support to India with military precision. A BAPIO India Covid Fund was set up in collaboration with DAUK, APNA NHS, BINA and Akshaya Patra. A three dimensional strategy was planned.
The second stream is providing Food. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs highlights the importance of universal and physiological needs as the core necessity and indeed, in crisis medicine this is what needs to be addressed first. BAPIO has teamed with Askhaya Patra and other charities to deliver food to underprivileged or disadvantaged populations in India.
The third stream of help was in setting up Telemedicine under the aegis of esteemed Professor Singhal. This involve following categories-
- Virtual ward rounds ; BAPIO linked up with four hospitals in different parts of the country. In the North with Rishikesh AIIMS, South – Manipal Hospital, Central India – Kings way hospital Nagpur and in the west- Charity hospital Gujarat. BAPIO recognises that senior expertise of Indian doctors is needed in ITU , when patients are stepped down to general wards from ITU, patients are generally managed by junior doctors or nurses. BAPIO doctors take the virtual ward rounds with junior staff helping review patients and formulate care plans.
- BAPIO are offering 1:1 support to doctors in rural India in reviewing patients who may have COVID or other medical conditions.
- In India there is a huge backlog of CT scans, BAPIO has put together a team of Radiologist to offer a quick turnover of reporting helping with diagnosis, treatment and care of patients.
- I Peer; Anxiety, burn- out , moral injury are experiences of doctors in UK and India. BAPIO has set up a wellbeing collaborative project to support colleagues in UK and India.
BAPIO is mindful and respectful of endeavours of people to raise money either by organising curry parties, city bankers donating money, or man on street – giving up his/her cup of coffee to donate few pounds towards the humanitarian effort is all important. Every little helps and needs to be accounted for. In that BAPIO have, ensured transparency of the funds collected and spent by regular updates and breakdown of costs.