A state of panic is emerging throughout the country as the lockdown continues and the pressure on healthcare workers builds up. Medics in the city of Quetta took to the streets to protest the lack of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits for health workers on the frontlines of the country’s battle against the coronavirus. They were met with a strong response from the local law enforcement for in turn endangering the lives of many by stepping out on the streets.

All the stakeholders at this point – the government, healthcare workers and the masses – need to be mindful to not spread chaos and panic at this time. It is important to be careful of our actions that can help in spreading the virus because recent incidents are showing the cracks in our healthcare system.

It is important to address the concerns of healthcare workers because, in the fight against the coronavirus, these medical officers are at the forefront. According to reports, in Balochistan alone, a total of 20 medical professionals – with 16 doctors – have already tested positive of the virus. We need our medical professionals to be properly protected, as the battle against this pandemic will continue still for months.

Since they are being exposed to the virus so frequently, not only healthcare workers, but their families are also at risk of contracting the virus. It is important to hasten all relief efforts and provide protective gear to medical professionals as soon as possible so they can perform their duty without fear for their lives. A feedback channel should also be established so that these medical professionals know who to contact in the government in case of an issue.

At the same time, it is also the duty of the medical health professionals to not endanger any more lives due to their own actions. This will only add a burden to the state, increasing the numbers instead of helping flatten the curve. We all have a joint responsibility in these matters, let’s fulfil our own individual ones.