The pandemic uprooted our lives and confined us to our homes. But doctors, medical staff, and other workers delivering essential services entered the warzone and fought the battle head-on.
Their journeys have been long, exhausting, and painful – as they dealt with a deadly virus, a raging pandemic, and an overwhelmed system.
Saturday, therefore, marked a monumental occasion as India launched the world’s largest vaccination drive against COVID-19. The hours of hard work and sacrifices culminated into this day, when the first of many healthcare workers got their first COVID shots.
While it is still long before we completely defeat the virus, this is a huge leap forward in that direction.
‘Smooth and Painless’
Dr AS Soin, Chairman, Institute of Liver Transplantation, Medanta Hospital, narrates his experience, while also spelling out the importance for everybody to take the vaccine when the time comes.
“The historic moment that everyone has been waiting for has arrived. The world's largest vaccination drive is underway. The two Indian vaccines that have been cleared by the DCGI – Covishield and Covaxin – have been proven to be safe and shown to be effective in generating immunological responses. So we should all go ahead and get vaccinated as soon as our turn comes.
Thanks to the scientists, Serum Institute, Bharat Biotech, the Government of India, DCGI, we can now see the light at the end of the tunnel. This is really the beginning of the end of the pandemic that we've all been dreaming about.
I had my first shot about three hours ago. It was smooth and painless and I am absolutely fine now, I'm continuing to do my work as usual. I've seen several patients since getting the shot, and I’ll soon be stepping into the operating room to do my surgeries for the day.
Now after getting the vaccine, healthcare workers will be at a reduced or no risk of COVID while we go about our jobs of saving lives. This will also hopefully motivate the rest of the public and instill enough confidence in them to get vaccinated without fear.”
(This story was first published in FIT and has been republished with permission.)