'Govt. Scheme Beneficiaries are Scared'

Updated: Aug 20


Q: Do you still have duties on tracking and tracing migrants or are you back to your regular duties as a frontline health worker? How has your role changed after the end of the lockdown?


Block Health Manager (BHM): I don’t have admin-related duties now. During the lockdown, I was involved in the surveys conducted by ASHAs. I was also involved in providing health-related information to people along with ASHAs and Auxiliary Nurse Midwives (ANMs). I assisted on conducting routine immunisations in the area, and on monitoring. My pre-pandemic tasks were primarily health-related.


However, the lockdown (local) was enforced again.


Q: What are the main precautions you take for executing your regular healthcare duties now? Have you been provided any training to do your tasks?


BHM: We are using masks and sanitiser, and maintaining physical distancing at work. The patients coming to the hospital have been asked to wear masks at all times. We are receiving training and instruction from the District and the State via Zoom.


Q: Do you provide any COVID-19 related advice to people? Do you also service COVID+ patients? What is it that you tell them?


BHM: We advise people to use masks and ensure physical distancing. COVID+ patients are not treated in my hospital because the facilities are not available here. If we there is a suspected patient, we send their sample for testing. If the person turns out to be positive, they are sent for isolation via ambulance.


Q: Are you encountering any difficulties on your job?


BHM: People are scared of the virus, and pregnant women and children are not coming to the

hospital/centre easily. ASHAs and ANMs go and discuss these things. It takes a lot of convincing, and only after that some of the beneficiaries turn up.


This interview was conducted with a Block Health Manager in Nalanda, Bihar in Hindi on 11 July 2020, and has been translated.





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