COVID-patient relatives lend doctors a helping hand

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HELPING HAND: Nguyễn Thị Hồng Anh, who has just recovered from COVID, asked to take care of her grandma who is also hospitalized. — Photo suckhoedoisong.vn

HÀ NỘI — Having learned of the hard work of medical workers during their hospital stays, many recovered patients and their relatives are volunteering to take care of other COVID cases, giving support to doctors and nurses.

Although the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday is nearing, the workload in COVID treatment facilities isn’t decreasing.

The National Hospital for Tropical Diseases (NHTD) in Đông Anh, Hà Nội, is always fully packed, and it isn’t just the doctors and nurses who are busy.

In the 50 square metre isolation room Trần Nguyệt Thơ, who has just recovered from COVID, is taking care of her 82-year-old father, who is also bedridden because of the virus.

Except for her two children, Thơ and four members of her family are positive with COVID from the early days of 2022. Her father is old and vulnerable, and must be transported to the NHTD for treatment, whereas Thơ is monitored at Sóc Sơn General Hospital.

Thơ asked to be transferred to the NHTD to take care of her father as well as to support the doctors at the hospital in treating patients.

“I want to return the favour of the kind doctors who helped treat my father,” said Thơ. “The doctors are overwhelmed by the number of new cases in Hà Nội, and I feel that I must support them and take care of not just my father, but other patients who are battling this disease.”

An emotional Thơ recalls how the doctors have not only been a physician, but psychologists to patients such as her father. “Not every patient can have their relatives taking care of them in the hospital. The burden then falls upon the doctors, and I really do feel for them,” Thơ added.

Nguyễn Thị Hồng Anh, 27, is somewhat luckier than Thơ as she is already COVID-free. Her 82-year-old grandmother was having radiation therapy for cancer when she caught the virus from Hồng Anh.

After being cured, Hồng Anh asked to enter the hospital to help her frail grandmother. “When the test results returned negative, I was not scared of the virus anymore and wanted to take care of grandma right away,” said Hồng Anh.

“I took care of grandma’s needs, so the doctors can have time to take care of people who are in need.”

As Thơ’s father is still weak, and Hồng Anh’s grandmother cannot yet sit up properly,Tết for them may be spent in the four walls of the isolation room. But both of them remain hopeful, waiting for the day that they can return to their family.

Though COVID will not be eradicated shortly, in order to control and adapt to the pandemic, frontline workers must be healthy to take care of themselves and the patients.

“I am very grateful for their help during these hard times, and I really wish them the best of health,” said Thơ. — VNS

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