BENGALURU: For this five-member family residing in Vasanth Nagar, things looked bleak when all of them tested positive for Covid-19. With the father working as a priest at a temple, the family was struggling to make ends meet. In a huge relief to the family, and considering the stigma associated with the virus, residents of Vasanth Nagar decided to pitch in and help them with the essentials.
“When we tested positive, my mother and two sisters were admitted in CV Raman hospital. My father and I were being treated at home. It was difficult to manage since our family was separated. But the residents got in touch with us and even today, they continue to provide us with food,” said 22-year-old Simran Sharma, who tested positive on July 4 along with her father. She is currently isolating herself with her family at their residence.
“We have recovered and are in quarantine. Our house has been sealed off. We do face stigma as whenever we come out to the balcony, people stare at us. But frankly, there is nothing to be worried about. We need to keep ourselves healthy,” she said. The residents would leave the essentials just outside the residence on a platform so they do not come in contact as the family continues to isolate themselves. The family were mildly symptomatic and though three of the members got beds in the hospital, the other two had to be home quarantined.
With antiviral drugs costing Rs 500 for 10 tablets per person which lasts only for a week, several patients are finding it difficult to manage the expenses. “We got in touch with the family and understood they needed help. A lot of people are scared when their neighbours test positive. We have to take precautionary measures of course, but not treat the patients as untouchables. We must move forward and help people as they are being isolated, give them courage and confidence during this time. We must act as the Florence Nightingales to those around,” said Rajkumar Dugar, co-founder of Citizens 4 Citizens (C4C).