Cleaning Floors to Dancing With Docs: Our COVID Journey in Assam

The doctors and nurses have given us great treatment and have tried as much as possible to keep our spirits up.

My Report
3 min read

Video Editor: Rahul SanpuiVideo Producer: Aastha Gulati

Hello everyone. My name is Debashish Sharma. I am a faculty member at the Department of Mathematics at Gurucharan College in Silchar, Assam. On 13 July, I developed mild symptoms of coronavirus, that is fever and dry cough. By the end of two days, I also lost sense of taste and smell. I was quite worried.

By the end of the second day, my wife developed symptoms too. We visited a doctor who prescribed us some antibiotics and asked us to wait a little before getting tested. In the meantime, we heard the unfortunate news that our relatives had tested positive for coronavirus. They had visited us a few days back. Without wasting time, my wife and I rushed ourselves to Silchar Medical College and Hospital (SMCH) for a test.


On 21 July, our test results came back positive. We were brought to the COVID ward at SMCH. The first two days were a little bit of a trouble for us as the conditions of the ward and bathrooms was unsanitary. They were both dirty and unhygienic but my complaints fell on deaf ears.

I then took matters in my own hands. With a few other patients of my ward who were a source of great help and support, I cleaned the toilets and room. We had a mini ‘Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan’. I had uploaded a video on YouTube recording the exercise and also wrote an open letter to the authorities at SMCH. Fortunately, they took it seriously and positively. From the next day on, there was proper sanitisation by the staff.

  • State of toilets.

    (Photo Courtesy: Debashish Sharma) 

Barring this initial hiccup, the doctors and nurses at the hospital have given us great treatment and have tried as much as possible to keep our spirits up.

On Kargil Diwas, for example, the doctors in their PPE kits danced and sang with coronavirus patients. That was something quite unexpected yet impressive.

Regarding the facilities at Silchar Medical College, the food we were provided with was quite appreciated. We used to get three meals a day as well as snacks and a beverage in the evening.

The doctors and nurses have given us great treatment and have tried as much as possible to keep our spirits up.
Room cleaning after raising alarm.
(Photo Courtesy: Debashish Sharma) 

Don’t be Afraid of COVID

We started getting better and better. With the fever gone, only dry cough was left to beat. We were gargling regularly and were also prescribed a cough syrup.

One major message I’d like to give is that many people are scared to get tested despite having symptoms. Being coronavirus positive is not something to be ashamed of and neither can someone be blamed for contracting it. The only way forward is to take all precautions possible. Blaming and discrimination of COVID patients should be completely discouraged. Fellow patients would agree.

“I would say it is just like a flu, which can be easily sorted out if you just take care of yourself. Mental coolness, positivity will cure you.”
Amrita Nath, Research Scholar
“Just believe in yourself so that it passes and your body’s immunity is strong, so that it fights back.”
Debarati Kar, Patient  

And of course, better safe than sorry!

“Please follow guidelines given by the government, like following social distancing, hand sanitisation, and wearing masks.”
Dr Bhaskar Kanti Nath, SMCH  

On 28 July, we were tested via a rapid antigen test and it was negative. We were discharged a day later.

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