The Battle Against Covid: IAS officer Pithode shares his learning as administrator & as an individual at Bhopal Art And Literature Festival

On March 22, 2020 when the first coronavirus patient was detected in Bhopal, Pithode’s. the then district collector strenuous trek to fight against the disease in the city began.

Staff ReporterUpdated: Sunday, March 27, 2022, 10:39 PM IST
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IAS officer Tarun Pithode addressing a session at Bhopal Literature and Art Festival at Bharat Bhavan on Sunday. | FP

Bhopal(Madhya Pradesh) : The then Bhopal collector Tarun Pithode said on Sunday he was at his wit’s end when the state Capital saw a sudden jump in Covid-19 cases overnight during the first wave.

“When the figure of 73 Covid-19 patients came to my knowledge, I felt as if I was the reason for the increase in cases. I expected a volley of questions from the public and higher ups,” said Pithode.

The IAS officer said he used to get up at 4:00am or 5:00 am and would check his mobile phone to get first information about Covid figures. Pithode was speaking about his book- The Battle Against Covid: Diary of a Bureaucrat- in a session of Bhopal Literature and Art Festival at Bharat Bhavan on Sunday. He was in conversation with additional chief secretary, health Mohd Suleman and senior cardiologist Dr Skand Kumar Trivedi.

On March 22, 2020 when the first coronavirus patient was detected in Bhopal, Pithode’s strenuous trek to fight against the disease in the city began.

Pithode said, “ I had to handle the migrant workers who covered kilometres on foot to make their way back home, fleeing cities that suddenly had no place for them. But doctors, police officers, administrators and civilians came forward putting their lives on the line to save fellow citizens. I managed 1000 buses to transport them to their respective districts.”

In his book ‘The Battle against Covid’, Pithode recounted his experiences and struggles while managing the crisis especially during the first wave. He outlined the strategies employed by various authorities to understand the virus and contain its spread. He visited hospitals after hospitals to take stock of medical facilities for proper treatment of Covid patients. Pithode shared what he learnt as an administrator and as an individual.

‘Air Bubble’ face suit was a savior for healthcare workers: Dr Trivedi

Sharing his experiences in the fight against coronavirus, cardiologist Dr Skand Kumar Trivedi said the ‘Air Bubble’ face suit played an important role in protecting the healthcare workers and doctors from getting infected during the Covid-19 wave.

Trivedi had come up with an ‘air bubble’ face suit to keep the medicos treating the Covid-19 patients safe from the infection. The fully sealed, transparent, face covering - like a face suit - has an independent supply of virus-free compressed air to enable Corona Warriors to breathe safely while treating the patients.

The concept was specifically introduced for the healthcare workers as they were constantly in touch with the patients, said the cardiologist.

" Spread of Covid-19 occurs via airborne particles and droplets. If the health workers were to inhale the same contaminated air exhaled by the patients they too would have contracted the infection. But we used the face suit and that protected our healthcare workers," said the senior cardiologist.

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