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Medica Superspecialty Hospital

Heart in the Times of Corona

The present pandemic has not just been a battle against a strange unknown virus, but also a lesson in humility, for all of us. We were used to solving problems, not avoiding them.

Since the path-breaking discoveries, from the late nineteenth century, humanity has overcome one challenge after another. Discovery of insulin in 1923, penicillin in 1928 and coronary angiography in 1957, bypass surgery in 1967 – all helped us climb over the hurdles. Our sense of intelligence and confidence seems to have been challenged by this little creature, that none of us had ever seen before.

As we dodge the virus, the other health problems haven’t really disappeared. 30,000 people die in India every day, from one disease or another. That is the natural mortality rate. Of which 10–12,000 are from cardiac problems. Compare this with 300 deaths from COVID every day. So, even compared to the pandemic, heart problems remain as crucial as ever.

The 70 days of strict lockdown were difficult for many of you to see doctors, get tests and treatment done. If it is a matter of a routine follow-up, telemedicine is a good option. Many of us are in doubt if it is safe to come to a hospital. If you need to, it is.

The safety precautions and practices are being followed very strictly. This makes sure that all patients and health workers are safe. In Medica, we have treated more than 500 COVID patients, without any instance of other patients getting affected. Just before the lockdown, we did a Heart Transplantation, flying in the heart from Patna.

With experience, our staff has all become very alert and efficient. So, if you are waiting for any investigations like angiogram or procedures like bypass or valve operations – we assure your safety. There is NO hospital anywhere which will not have admitted or treated a COVID patient. It is vital for hospitals to treat COVID patients along with all other patients, with all safety precautions.

Medica is also a centre for advanced organ support services. With our experience in Heart Transplantation and one of India’s largest experience of ECMO (advanced Heart Lung Support), our team has brought the most advanced technology to our city. As we face up to COVID, we are ready to take on all other challenges as well.

Don’t let your dear ones suffer, as this concern with COVID will linger on for a few more months. This threat will pass. It is a matter of time since we will have a vaccine and better medicines. In those happier days, we will look back, and recall how different and difficult the past months had been. Still, as a generation, we have had an easy time so far. My father through his adolescence and youth was battling through the freedom struggle and then resettling their lives by seeking refuge from one land to the other. They had to bear hardships for decades. I am sure we have enough resolve to see through a few months.

We want and pray that you all be safe and well.
If any help is needed, come to us as you are one of us.

(Dr Kunal Sarkar is Senior Cardiac Surgeon, Head of Cardiac Surgery and Senior Vice Chairman of Medica Hospitals)

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