Mumbai: Have you ever been lost, searching for wards, outpatient departments, doctors' cabins, medical stores and or other departments inside huge, maze-like civic or government-run hospitals? And, then, amidst all the worry and tension, there's added pressure of navigating your way through a sea of strangers! But, there comes a stranger who points you to the right direction... Forty-two-year-old Abubaker Qadri is one such stranger whom you could cross paths with at Sir Jamshed Jeejeebhoy Hospital. Abubaker helps patients and their relatives reach the right counter without wasting time at the hospital.
For the doctors and staff at the hospital, Abubaker is the good Samaritan always lending a helping hand to the underprivileged and less educated patients, who find it difficult to reach the right place at the hospital.
One of Mumbai's renowned government hospital, JJ sees a footfall of up to 6,000 outpatients and 300 admissions on a daily basis. The hospital, which is spread over 43 acres, often gets patients and their guardians or relatives running helter-skelter for something or the other.
Abubaker, a resident of Pydhonie, is a regular at JJ Hospital and is often with a bunch of documents, patients' files, running between departments with the patients. He also helps in filling of registration forms, educating and providing help in choosing appropriate government health schemes offered by the hospital, getting appointments with doctors and even solving problems between staff and patients.
Abubaker charges no money for his work. For him, it is his way of giving it back to society in whatever little way he can. “I help patients in my free time and spend six-seven hours on a daily basis at the hospital. Some patients come through reference, and I take on 10-15 different cases every day,” he said.
Abubaker earns his livelihood through a small printing business, which he runs early in the morning. His wife is a teacher at a private school.
Dr TP Lahane, director of state Directorate for Medical Education and Research (DMER) and former dean of Sir JJ Hospital, said, “Abu(baker) is a good soul. He has helped with a lot of law-and-order situations in the hospital and is always there for the needy.”