#CovidCrisis: How Can You Get A Job Within 6 Months?

If you or someone you know has lost their only earning member in this pandemic then this thread is for you. Read ahead and RT to make it reach someone in need. This is an action plan on how you can get a job within 6 months and what you would need for that 👇 +
1. Calm down. I know it’s easier said then done, I can’t even imagine the pain you’re going through but.. Stop panicking, trust me this is the first step. There are multiple ways to find an income stream but it only works if you are thinking straight. +
2. Take care of your family. Deal with the loss. Yes, I understand that the future looks bleak and we’ll find a way but first deal with the loss. Once you’re done with last rites, spend sometime with your family. Tell them everything is going to be okay. +
3. Savings for 6 months? Now, think clearly. Do you have savings? Life insurance money? Something must be there to help you stay afloat for next 6 months. Or take some loan from a family member, tell them all you need is 6 months. +
5. About college Take leave from college if you can’t do learning and college at the same time. You can finish college later. Sadly degree might not guarantee instant job but skills would. Desperate times call for desperate measures. +

» NextBigWhat’s #Threadmill brings you curated wisdom from Twitter threads on product, life and growth.

Read more posts on Job Skills and Career Development here. For podcasts, click here!

COVID-19 Vaccines That Are Likely To Be Given In India In 2021!

India is currently surviving the second India is currently surviving the second wave of COVID-19 that has put its healthcare system on the verge of being collapsed. People are facing a scarcity of essential medical supplies such as oxygen and many other necessary medicines.

It has led to the shortage of vaccines that has hindered the hope of getting protected from the disease. Looking at the current trends, the government is making all the efforts to turn things around by the end of 2021.

NITI Aayog released a detailed plan about the availability of eight COVID-19 vaccines that will roll out to push the vaccination drive. It can be considered a significant and much-needed push that will help India get vaccinated quickly and proceed further to the step of gaining herd immunity.

Current COVID-19 vaccines that are available in India

There are currently two COVID-19 vaccines in India, Astra-Zeneca Oxford Covishield and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, that are being administered at the vaccination drive. Soon Russian vaccine Sputnik-V will be available to speed up the vaccination process.

The centre has announced that between August and December, most of the citizens will get vaccinated.

What are those about eight COVID-19 vaccines that are likely to be available soon?

Covaxin

This vaccine is made in India by the Indian pharmaceutical firm Bharat biotech with the help of the National Institute of Virology and Indian Council Medical Research (ICMR). These vaccines are currently in use at many places in India.

Covaxin is 81% effective against the virus, according to reports, and can neutralize UK, Indian, and Brazilian strains. 

This vaccine has used the sample of deadly coronavirus with the help of the National Institute of Virology to make the anti-covid jab. It will make the human immune system detect the virus and will help in creating antibodies.

The Covaxin is currently being sold to the central government at Rs 150, while the state government is getting it at 400. Rs 1200 is the price set for any private institution. 

Covishield

Covishield is developed by Oxford–AstraZeneca and manufactured in the Serum Institute of India. It is one of the vaccines that is being used widely in India to push the vaccination drive.

Covishield vaccine is made from the weakened version adenovirus (common cold virus in chimpanzees) to develop antibodies in the human immune system against this virus.

Studies have shown Covishield has a 90% efficacy rate against the virus if the second dose of these vaccines is taken after two months from the first dose.

The Serum Institute of India is charging Rs 150 for the centre and Rs 450 for state governments. For private institutions, the price is set at Rs 700.

Sputnik V

The Gamaleya Institute in Moscow developed the Sputnik V vaccine. It employs a harmless cold-type virus as a courier to carry a small portion of the coronavirus to the body. 

Giving the tiny fragment of the virus to the body will help the immune system recognize the threat of this virus and provide time to form antibodies to fight against it without being at risk of falling ill. 

Sputnik V is likely to be available in India by this week.

Bharat Biotech Nasal Vaccine

This vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech is currently in its first phase of trials. Officials from the Ministry of Health said that by December, they expect to have procured ten crore doses of the Nasal Vaccine produced by Bharat Biotech.

This vaccine does not require a needle; hence people will have to go to their nearby healthcare provider to get this vaccine through nasal drops. The institute claims that it will be available for both children and adults.

Novavax

The COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the US pharmaceutical company Novavax, will be produced by the Serum Institute of India and marketed as Covovax.

This vaccine is yet to get approved in the United States, the United Kingdom, and India has shown 96.4 percent effectiveness against moderate to severe effects caused by the initial strain of SARS-CoV-2. It had an effectiveness of about 86.3 percent against mutant virus variants.

The vaccine is currently in its 2nd phase of trials.

Bio E SUBunit Vaccine

This vaccine is developed by the Hyderabad-based firm Biological E, and it’s expected to roll out its vaccine in August after phase 3 results. According to the Ministry Of Health And Family Welfare, Biological E will supply 30 crore doses of its vaccine between August and December.

The company claims to provide the most affordable vaccine in India.

Zydus Cadila DNA vaccine

This vaccine developed by an Ahmedabad-based firm is currently waiting for its 3rd phase results and is likely to start production by the end of May. It is another indigenously prepared vaccine after Covaxin.

The company plans to make one crore doses per month after the third phase results.

Gennova mRNA Vaccine

It is India’s first mRNA vaccine prepared by a Pune-based Pharmaceutical firm Gennova. The company expected to have a phase 1 trial soon to conduct human tests in December by DGCI. The firm is scheduled to get emergency use after the phase 2 results.

It is India’s first indigenously mRNA messenger vaccine after vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna, which are based on the same mRNA pattern.

As the cases are rising in India daily, it becomes crucial for people to get vaccinated as soon as possible. It is the only way to curb the spread of the virus and to attain immunity against it. If all approved, these eight COVID-19 vaccines will serve to develop antibodies against the virus and help speed up the vaccination drive.

Read inspiring and happy stories about COVID-19 warriors to brighten up your mood!

Maharashtra Doctor Couple Collects Unused Medicines To Help COVID-19 Patients Who Can’t Afford Them!

As the second wave of the pandemic continues to disrupt the nation, more than half the population struggles to avail of basic medical facilities even.

We have reached a point where it doesn’t matter how rich you are; the shortage of medical equipment and facilities are beating all.

In such a case, think about those who can’t really afford to pay grands for common flu and fever tablets.

To tackle this issue, a doctor couple from Maharashtra started an initiative, ‘Meds For More’ which aims to help people by providing them medicines that were not used by other COVID-19 patients.

“We started this initiative 10 days ago. We collect medicines from housing societies and provide them to those who can not afford them,” says Dr Marcus Ranney, who is heading this initiative along with his wife, Dr Raina.

“The idea came when one of the family members of our staff got infected from COVID-19, and they needed medication. As you know the medicines can be expensive. At that time, there were a few people who had recovered from COVID-19, so we decided to take their medicines and donate them,” Dr Raina said.

After that initiative, the couple decided to take this forward. They took help from some people residing in their neighbourhood and set up a team. “We started this mission with the objective of helping those who can not go out to buy medicines or anyone who can’t afford the COVID-19 medicines,” the couple added.

20 kilograms of unused COVID-19 medicines in just 10 days

Within the 10 days of this initiative, the team managed to collect more than 20 kilograms of unused and leftover medicines. These will further be distributed to primary health care centres in rural districts across the country, which can use them to treat underprivileged COVID-19 patients. 

“We have now 100 buildings that are sending medicines to us. We are a team of eight people and, of course, the volunteers in different buildings. Last week, we collected 20 kilograms of medicines, which have been packaged and given to our NGO partners,” Dr Ranney shared.

‘Meds For More’ is a citizen initiative that collects all kinds of medicines and donates them for the treatment of underprivileged patients. Besides this, they also collect basic equipment like pulse oximeters and thermometers.

People who are interested in supporting ‘Meds For More’ can reach out to the couple via social media or email: medsformoreindia@gmail.com.

Amid the pandemic, NextBigWhat is featuring and honouring every single effort made by individuals, groups and organizations to acknowledge their fight against COVID-19.

If you know someone who’s bringing a change in people’s lives, share their story with us. Let the world know them! #CovidWarriors

Despite Being On Oxygen Himself, Srinagar’s 50YO Asthma Patient Supplies Oxygen Cylinders To COVID-19 Patients!

As the nation battles with rising COVID-19 cases, shortage of medicine, oxygen cylinders and hospital beds, people from every corner of the country, in fact, the world, are coming forward to offer help and do their bit.

One such selfless man from Srinagar came into the limelight who has been delivering oxygen cylinders to hospitals and needy COVID-19 patients despite being on oxygen himself for the past three years.

Manzoor Ahmad is an asthma patient and carries an oxygen cylinder with him 24×7 as it helps him breathe better. The 50YO driver from Srinagar uses a small truck to transport oxygen cylinders to COVID-19 patients and hospitals.

ALSO READ: How 500+ teachers in Mumbai are connecting COVID-19 patients to healthcare facilities!

“I know the importance of oxygen as I have been on oxygen support for the last three years after suffering an asthma attack. I have been driving this vehicle and ensuring my family’s well being. But today, it is even more important to carry these cylinders,” Ahmad says.

Ahmad, who is the only earning member of his family and a father of three, is at higher risk of contracting any deadly infection, let alone COVID-19, as his lungs are weak. And probably this is what drives him to work and serve people every day as he knows the true value of ‘oxygen’.

“I have three children: two sons and a daughter. My elder son is a school dropout while my younger son and daughter are studying, and I want to make them good human beings. This work today is not only giving me a livelihood but also a great amount of satisfaction,” Ahmad further adds. “During this crisis, even if my contribution is able to save even a single life, that would be a great achievement for me.”

ALSO READ: J&K teacher turns into a health worker; record COVID-19 sample collection to curb the cases!

People like Manzoor Ahmad makes us believe that there is much more beyond the struggles we face every day and that one should not give up, no matter what, as this too shall pass soon!

Amid the pandemic, NextBigWhat is featuring and honouring every single effort made by individuals, groups and organizations to acknowledge their fight against COVID-19.

If you know someone who’s bringing a change in people’s lives, share their story with us. Let the world know them! #CovidWarriors

ALSO READ: Ghaziabad family delivers home-cooked meals to COVID-19 affected families every day for free! 

J&K Teacher Turns Into A Health Worker; Record COVID-19 Sample Collection To Curb The Cases!

When a Kashmir based teacher tested positive for COVID-19, reality hit her hard. And that’s when she decided to work as a health counsellor and help the localities.

Babli Rani, originally from Bhaderwah, Doda, has been working in Kashmir for 11 years as a teacher. Things were fine until the virus caught her — and when she tested negative, she signed up as a health counsellor to do her bit.

“Since schools were shut due to COVID-19 and reduced activity, I decided to work as a health functionary days after I had turned negative,” Babli said in an interview. “I was moving from one village to another in Wakoora block carrying out samples of people who contracted the virus. I was tasked to take samples, maintain data of COVID-19 positives and conduct their contact tracing. I have been doing this for months.”

Rani has been posted in Ganderbal for 11 years and has worked in several schools — her last posting was in a government school at Rabitar, after which she started working as a health worker. She was trained in COVID-19 sampling collection, data processing and other basics of a surveillance team member.

ALSO READ: How 500+ teachers in Mumbai are connecting COVID-19 patients to healthcare facilities!

As of this writing, she has collected over 2000 RAT and RT-PCR samples and has become an expert in sample collection.

The idea to take up this role was to ensure that none of the COVID-19 patients transmits the virus to another person, and the district doesn’t witness any rise in cases.

“During one sampling session, I tested a nine-month baby, and on another trip, 40 villagers were found infected with the virus. The officials were pleased with my work and said without these findings; the infections would have spread deeper into the community,” she added.

Discovering herself while working as a health worker

Her typical morning starts with beginning the awareness drive against the disease. Her village trip includes some counselling session where she shares all COVID-19 advisories and measures that can help in limiting the virus spread.

This job, Rani believes, helped her in discovering the social worker inside her. She enjoys her job as working for common people gives her peace of mind. It’s been a few months since she started working, and she has proved herself as an important member of the surveillance team.

“I was home once during the last winter vacation but did not get time to see the kids,” Rani, mother of two,  shared how her work has restricted her from visiting her family.

ALSO READ: Chennai Welfare Group converts autos into ambulances, saves 160+ lives!

However, prevention and precaution are the only ways to protect her loved ones, she says and is happy with helping people around her.

“I am at peace these days,” Rani ends with a high spirit, and she doesn’t intend to stop her work until the pandemic ends!

Amid the pandemic, NextBigWhat is featuring and honouring every single effort made by individuals, groups and organizations to acknowledge their fight against COVID-19.

If you know someone who’s bringing a change in people’s lives, share their story with us. Let the world know them! #CovidWarriors

ALSO READ: Ghaziabad family delivers home-cooked meals to COVID-19 affected families every day for free!

This Celebrity Couple Got Married In Just INR 150; Saved Remaining For COVID-19 Relief Funds!

We belong to a society where big fat weddings matter more than do waqt ki roti!

Now one thing that COVID-19 has forced the Indian janta to do is to limit their guests at weddings with limited expenditure. While some might like this idea of a small close-knitted celebration, others are not much.

Now, often, celebrities are expected to throw big parties and hefty functions before their weddings as a part of the glamour world, but recently, a celebrity couple decided to go south with it.

Celebrity couple Saloni and Viraf Patel got married recently after dating each other for almost two years. But what drew everyone’s attention to it is that they did everything at just INR 150!!

As per the actress, the couple has been planning for their wedding since last year, but the pandemic hit the world right before that. As a result, they delayed their wedding hoping that things would be fine by 2021, but this year it hit even worse. Although the dates were finalized, there was no sign of when it would get back to normal.

Both Saloni and Viraf had been tested positive in April, and the virus later caught their parents as well. Eventually, the couple decided to cancel all the functions. Their court date was May 6; after a lot of dilemma and discussion, they decided to go ahead with it.

The couple arrived at Bandra court in Mumbai to officiate everything. The entire wedding cost INR 150, which included their marriage registration fee and some photocopies of documents.

Both of their families were not around. The couple couldn’t even arrange wedding rings. Saloni borrowed a saree from her friend while Viraf managed to get something from his closet to match it. 

 

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A post shared by Viraf Patell (@virafpp)


“I thought it won’t be as exciting and memorable as it would have been if there were functions, but the day was as memorable and special as it could have been. It was simple, and at the end of the day, we were discussing how tired we were with all the video calls. Now, I think how do people manage with all the functions because we were exhausted with our court marriage,” Saloni shares in an interview.

The couple has decided to donate a part of their wedding money to COVID-19 relief funds. They are still figuring out the NGOs and communities they want to support. “We are looking forward donating the money we did not spend,” Saloni says.

Wonder how helpful it would be if every couple decides to do the same, if every individual donates for a social cause and not just some temple and if every CSR activity is about making an impact and not just numbers!

ALSO READ: Chennai Welfare Group Converts Autos Into Ambulances, Saves 160+ Lives!

This Ghaziabad Family Delivers Home-cooked Meals To COVID-19 Affected Families Every Day For Free!

“I have been approached by several individuals and NGOs for help lately, but I sincerely denied them. I am trying my best to help people within my capability,” says Narendra Singh, a Ghaziabad based resident who has been helping COVID-19 affected families by offering them home-cooked meals for free.

It all started when Singh realized how some of his friends suffered when their sisters/ mothers/ wives tested positive. “They weren’t used to manage the home, unlike the ladies. And that striked me. What if we could help them with the food part. At least they won’t need to worry about cooking,” he shares!

However, it wasn’t easy initially. While some couldn’t ask him for him because he was a stranger, others weren’t sure how costly the food would be. And that’s when Singh started circulating WhatsApp messages on his society and friends’ groups; confirming that he would be serving home-cooked meals to every COVID-19 affected family for free!

It’s been 20 days since Narendra Singh and his wife, Dr Manpreet Kaur, started this initiative. Currently, they deliver food to almost four to five families, each consisting of 5-6 members every day. The meal consists of protein-rich dishes paneer, beans, nutella, peas and grams.

Jo khate hain, wahi khilate hain,” says Dr Kaur, who is a dentist by profession and has been making 50+ chapattis and more than 500gm rice every day. It’s not easy to manage home, a 4 YO kid, along with taking care of patients’ meals, but this is the need of the hour, she says. “We’ve been seeing people struggling for basics. While we also help people in getting verified information about plasma, oxygen cylinders, hospital beds, ventilators, etc., helping them with their meals is something we thought of doing by ourselves,” Dr Kaur continued.

“We’ve always been spiritual and believed in working for humanity. Generally, we used to donate to Gurudwaras in the form of ‘Dasvandh’, but this time we thought of using this money and resources for COVID-19 affected families. Although we are not doing it on a large scale, I am happy with the feedback and the blessings we receive,” says Singh, who lives in Indirapuram.

Narendra and Manpreet belong to a nuclear family. Their daughter is still very young, and hence they never really thought of expanding this initiative. Neither they considered taking any form of donation. But every time someone offers them help, they encourage them to donate only in the form of raw materials or staples and not money. “What we are doing is for humanity and for the almighty; can we really justify it with money,” he smiles. 

Free Home-Cooked Meals

Providing quality with quantity

Currently, Singh and his wife only want to maintain the quality of food and the amount they are serving. They generally prepare and pack the food in containers and send it via delivery services like Swiggy Genie.

Every time they send food to any family, they form a relationship with them, which cannot be defined. “I feel they become my family and their health and recovery start mattering to me as much as it matters to their loved ones,” Narendra says.

[Watch: Team Hope offering free food amid #COVID19​ in Varanasi]

Over time, he is also preparing a database of all the patients he has been serving food to. The idea is to keep a record of people who may wish to donate plasma after they recover. Besides this, Singh also works with some local Gurudwaras and communities to help people. 

Singh believes that this nature of helping others and going beyond one’s comfort zone is in the culture of Sikhism. “Langar is a basic and very old & vital part of our culture. While ours is a home-kitchen based langar, a lot many people are doing it on a societal level. This is a time which demands us to work for others and not for ourselves,” he says.

Singh doesn’t know for how long or how many people he would be able to help, but he doesn’t intend to stop until then. “Nanak Naam Chardi Kala, teraa bhane sarbat da bhala,” he ends with this.

If anyone wants to get in touch with Narendra Singh, s/he can contact him via +91 99903 14742. Currently, they serve food to people residing only within the 10km radius of their home. This ensures that the food remains fresh and hot by the time they receive it.

Amid the pandemic, NextBigWhat is featuring and honouring every single effort made by individuals, groups and organizations to acknowledge their fight against COVID-19.

If you know someone who’s bringing a change in people’s lives, share their story with us. Let the world know them! #CovidWarriors

How 500+ Teachers In Mumbai Are Connecting COVID-19 Patients To Healthcare Facilities!

It is like any other day for Vishranti Jadhav. After finishing her daily chores, she heads for work. She is a teacher at Ketkipada BMC School in Borivali. COVID-19 has completely changed her life and the way she used to teach kids.

But what remained the same was the josh, the temperament and the dedication to influence people’s lives in a better way.

Hence she, along with 500+ other civic teachers, joined hands together to fight the deadly coronavirus in her own way!

“I cannot find a bed for a patient!”
“Help us locate an ICU bed!”
“Where can I get the vaccine near my residence?”

These are some of the queries the 45-year-old comes across nowadays. And as mentioned, she is not the only one.

As of this writing, 547 civic school teachers across the city are working at BMC’s war rooms to assist COVID-19 patients!!

As the summer vacation has already started for schools, all the civic teachers have been assigned to COVID-19 related work.

These teachers are working under the guidance of medical and administrative professionals and are generally the first point of contact between COVID-19 patients and the healthcare system. And they are responsible for everything — from managing angry and hopeless citizens to pacifying struggling patients and their families to responding to calls filled with gratitude — they are responsible for acknowledging every single call.

“Some of the calls really shook us, especially when the callers would almost beg to locate an ICU bed for their loved ones, and we were helpless. We were noting down all requirements and connecting them with vacant places wherever possible,” said Priya Sawant, another civic teacher from Ashokwan Municipal School in Borivali.

© Provided by Scroll

“The wife tested positive, but since she had absolutely no symptoms, the doctor asked the couple to remain home-quarantined. The woman was really stressed after knowing all other things happening around, and her husband asked me to talk to her to calm her down. I was tense thinking if I would really help her calm down, but after speaking to her, she felt relieved,” said Vishranti Jadhav, who did not fail to provide mental support to her callers.

© Provided by Scroll

“This was a completely different experience where we felt a great sense of social connection as we helped callers meet their needs or resolve their Covid-19 disease or vaccine-related queries!”

said another teacher, Krishna Yadav.

“They have the experience of handling a class full of children from different psychological backgrounds, and it has really helped at COVID-19 war rooms. A total of 547 teachers are appointed to do this work,” said BMC’s education officer, Mahesh Palkar.

In a city that is one of the most active hotspots of COVID-19, several teachers are working every single day without expecting anything in return. They are posted in the war rooms for a 15-day duty chart on rotation for almost four to five hours daily.

There is something called ‘going beyond work calls’, and these teachers are going beyond their assigned roles every day. In a time when people are struggling for a hospital bed and world’s most common chemical, oxygen, even an “everything will be fine” sounds nothing less than a bright light!

A warm tribute and salute to these people who we do not really think about in our daily lives — every bit matters — and every story deserves to be heard! #CovidWarriors

ALSO READ: Meet the samaritans providing meals to needy and COVID-19 patients for free!

Meet The Samaritans Providing Meals To Needy And COVID-19 Patients For Free!

What adds to the agony of COVID-19 is the level of helplessness a person experiences — with no resources available around, people suffer to the extent that is unexplainable.

Be it a COVID-19 patient or a frontline worker, or someone low on finances — the unavailability of resources, particularly food, is one of the major sufferings right now.

Several people have come forward to fight this and are offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients in their locations. Here are some of those good samaritans NextBigWhat salutes to!

‘Food for Kashmir’ by ‘Tiffin Aaw’

When Rayees Ahmad, co-founder, ‘Tiffin Aaw’, started getting calls from people outside Kashmir requesting to deliver food to their COVID-19 positive parents, the food entrepreneur decided to start this campaign, ‘Food for Kashmir’.

These are some of the less known heroes who are fighting the pandemic and offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients!
© Provided by DNA

“We are a small startup, and it’s just been a year. People are calling us; we are giving food to people without asking for money. And among those people only, some get so emotional and tell us that they want to sponsor other COVID-19 positive family’s or patients,” said the co-founder, Nida Rayees.

The husband-wife duo delivers home-cooked meals to needy and COVID-19 patients, their families, and COVID-19 warriors for free. They have decided to keep this initiative going till the pandemic is not over.

Nisha Bhagat — The superwoman from Ranchi

This tribal woman running her own cafe in Ranchi decided to convert her business into service for the families suffering from COVID-19. She offers breakfast and meals to needy and COVID-19 patients for free.

These are some of the less known heroes who are fighting the pandemic and offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients!
© Provided by DNA

It all began when Nisha got a call from a woman asking for home-cooked and deliverable ‘khichdi’. “She was ready to pay whatever…I was a bit surprised because people generally don’t order that simple food over the phone. Then the caller told me the sad part; everyone in that family had turned COVID-19 positive, and none of them was physically fit enough to cook food. I took the order and sent it out. That set me thinking why not provide free food to such families,” she said.

Nisha takes extra care of nutrition and cleanliness while preparing the meals and ensures that no one is denied food by her.

‘Covid Meals For India’ by Chef Saransh Goila

When the Goila Butter Chicken (GBC) founder received a DM on Instagram to help a girl with organising her meals who had lost her immediate family to Covid-19, it struck him hard.

These are some of the less known heroes who are fighting the pandemic and offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients!
© Provided by Forbes India

“It’s heartbreaking. When you are stressed about finding hospital beds or oxygen for your near and dear ones or even grieving deaths in families, the last thing you want to worry about is what am I going to eat. There was a big gap here, and I knew I had to step in,” said Goila.

Along with the co-founder of Fastor, Karan Sood, he launched covidmealsforindia.com on April 25, 2021, to ensure that none of the affected or needy families sleeps empty stomach. The portal connects COVID-19 affected individuals with those willing to cook a meal for them for either free or nominal costs.

‘Feed The Poor’ by D Surender Babu

“We often neglect the people who live in rural areas during the time of crisis. The fact is that they are the ones who are most affected. People affected by coronavirus in villages do not have enough financial support, so I decided to provide them with minimal facilities. People can check out feedthepoor.in and then fill in their details as to what they want to donate,” said the Hyderabad man.

These are some of the less known heroes who are fighting the pandemic and offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients!
© Provided by Indiatimes

He runs the web portal, ‘Feed The Poor’, to aid people in the rural areas by providing food and medicines. He and his team often rely on donations to fight the crisis.

The superwomen of Patna

Anupama Singh and her sister Neelima, along with their mother, Kundan Devi, are becoming the messiahs for those infected in the city. While Anupama and her mother cook at home, sister Neelima ensures safe delivery to COVID-19 affected families. 

These are some of the less known heroes who are fighting the pandemic and offering free meals to needy and COVID-19 patients!
© Provided by TNIE

“Recently, a member of my family tested positive for the virus. We realised how it is difficult for virus-infected people to get meals while living in self-isolation. Hence, we started serving free food packets to the homes of coronavirus-infected patients living in self-isolation as a service to humanity at our own cost,” said Anupama. “We have dedicated all our savings, which were kept for marriage, anniversaries, birthday functions, purchasing clothes and doing other household work for the next one year, to continue serving free foods to the COVID-19 patients.”

Yes, the fight is long, but people are fighting — and ensuring that no one faces it alone. NextBigWhat salutes these less known heroes! #CovidWarriors

How are you doing your bit? Share with us, and we will share it with the world — because every story deserves to be heard!

ALSO Read: Triplet siblings raises over $280,000 for medical supplies in India!

#COVID19: Several States Declare Journalists As Frontline Workers For Vaccination Drive!

The role of media, which is considered as the fourth pillar of Indian democracy, has finally been acknowledged by several state governments.

Apart from the healthcare unit and departments like police, sanitation and hygiene, several state governments have decided to declare media personnel and journalists as frontline COVID-19 warriors, citing their services to the nation.

Like the other frontline workers of the nation, Indian media is also playing a major role in fighting the COVID-19 crisis by providing real-time vital information and details related to the pandemic, making people aware and updated.

By declaring journalists as frontline workers, it will also make them eligible for getting priority in the COVID-19 vaccination programme.

These are the states that declared their media personnel as frontline workers:

Bihar

The Bihar government declared all journalists accredited with the Information and Public Relations Department as frontline workers. 

“Corona vaccine will be given to journalists on a priority basis in the state. Journalists have been performing their roles in a good way during the pandemic. They are making people aware of the dangers of corona infection,” CM Nitish Kumar tweeted.

Odisha

Odisha CM, Naveen Patnaik, declared journalists as COVID-19 warriors and announced an ex gratia of INR 15 lakh for the next of kin of journalists who lose their lives to COVID-19 while on duty.

“As many as 6,944 working journalists of the state have been covered under the Gopabandhu Sambadika Swasthya Bima Yojana. They are getting health insurance cover of INR 2 lakh each,” the state government said in a statement.

Uttarakhand

“Since the time the lockdown started and the country eased it gradually, even officers and employees of the information department have been constantly involved in communication and spreading awareness about correct information in tasks related to fighting COVID-19,” the Uttarakhand government said in a statement and declared its journalists as frontline workers.

Madhya Pradesh

“Therefore, we have decided to declare all accredited journalists as frontline workers in Madhya Pradesh. They will be taken care of,” CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan said in a statement while declaring all journalists as frontline workers.

Punjab

The state government of Punjab said that all accredited and yellow card journalists in Punjab would be considered as COVID-19 frontline warriors.

Uttar Pradesh

CM Yogi Adityanath led government announced that all the media professionals and their families would be given priority in the vaccination drive.

Apart from these states, West Bengal’ CM Mamata Banerjee and Tamil Nadu’s next CM MK Stalin have also declared all the media personnel as the COVID-19 frontline workers in their respective states. 

Though I am writing this from home, there is a sense of relief and happiness for those journalists and media workers who have been on the frontline, reporting since day one. Thank you for your service to the nation!

ALSO Read: Triplet siblings raises over $280,000 for medical supplies in India!

Triplet Siblings Raises Over $280,000 For Medical Supplies In India!

With the COVID-19 cases rising every day, we are seeing more and more people coming forward to help each other — to assist and offer help in every possible way. From children to senior citizens, everyone is doing their part — to ensure that we win this fight soon.

Recently, three Indian-American siblings joined this fight. Founders of a non for profit organisation, Little Mentors, the trio managed to raise more than USD280,000 to send essentials and oxygen supplies for COVID-19 patients in India.

The 15-year-old triplet siblings reached out to their families, school friends and relatives to raise funds. The amount raised will be used for arranging essential equipment like oxygen concentrators and ventilators for the hospitals and needy patients in and around Delhi.

“Our only request is to return it (the equipment) when it’s not further needed as the next patient can use it. This is important as supply of these equipment is very scarce, and the affected population is enormous,” said the trio, Karina, Gia and Armaan. “We need everybody’s help in this as such an enormous task can only be accomplished by teamwork. We are very fortunate to work with an excellent team of physicians, both in the US and India. Although we hope and pray that this second wave of the coronavirus will go away soon, we are getting ready for the worst and asking people to be careful and help each other in this major crisis.”

The Gupta triplets have also been applauded earlier in December 2020 for creating an app, Apollo, which assists young entrepreneurs on a digital platform. Their non for profit organisation, Little Mentors, was founded more than two years ago.

“When you create any venture, be it a nonprofit, a for-profit business or something else, you have to make sure there is a base,” said Armaan.”Our network is children and students, but we wanted to have adults and advisors also on board to guide and help us.”

They are also planning to maintain a database of the people so that they can direct the supply properly. Besides, they plan to open distribution centres in major cities.

In a time when many people are selfishly stocking up essential medical equipment at their home, without thinking how the needy ones would manage — samaritans like these siblings are proving that there is still hope and light left between us! Kudos to these super teens!

ALSO READ: Re-imagining networking in post-covid world: Force yourself out of echo chambers

What Is Proning? How Can It Help You Increase Oxygen Levels At Home?

With the ongoing second COVID-19 wave, the country is witnessing an acute shortage of beds and oxygen cylinders. The continuous surge in daily cases has overburdened the hospitals. As a result, patients experiencing severe implications of the virus, or having oxygen saturation level below 92% are getting admitted to the hospital. 

Since the virus mainly attacks the respiratory system of a healthy human being, the government has advised the people to practice the medically approved technique of ‘Proning’. Now, if you are wondering what Proning is or how you can practice it, hang in there. You will get answers to all your queries by the end of the article. 

What is Proning?

Proning refers to the ‘lying position’ on your chest and stomach while practicing deep breathing. It is a medically approved process and helps in improving the oxygenation of the body. The position is considered efficient in providing oxygen to various parts of the body, which is usually not possible when we lay on our sides or back. 

You might be surprised to know that the technique is not new at all. It has been there for decades and used in the treatment of patients with acute respiratory disease syndrome (ARDS).  According to a study published in the European Journal, 2002, it was referred to as “a simple and safe method to improve oxygenation”.

How does it help COVID-19 patients?

The COVID-19 virus attacks your lungs and weakens your respiratory system. As a consequence, the oxygen levels in your body continue to fall, and might even result in death in some cases. The best way to monitor your oxygen levels is through an Oxi Pulse meter.

[Also Watch: Start Double Masking Today: Here is How To #ProtectYourself​]

The reading on an Oxi Pulse meter for a healthy individual would be 95 or above. On the other hand, below 95 is an indication that you need to consult a health professional. Any drop below 92 means you need to be hospitalised and require oxygen support. 

If you aren’t able to get any bed in these tough times, first isolate yourself. Make sure the room of isolation is properly ventilated and receives fresh air for most times of the day. Now, practicing proning in such a case will not only help you in oxygenation but also delays the ventilator support that you might require earlier. Awake proning ensures that the tissues in your body receive a proper flow of oxygen. The other best feature of the practice is that it improves your oxygen level in a matter of minutes.

How to do Proning? 

There are two ways to do it: 

Pillow-Proning: As described by the Indian Health Ministry

According to the instructions prescribed, lay down on your chest and stomach and place a pillow under your neck. Place two under your chest and one under your shins. In this position, practice deep breathing. In a matter of a few minutes, you will be able to witness an improvement in your oxygen levels. 

The 30-minute method

According to this method, you need to switch your lying position every 30 minutes. The method involves the following steps:

Step 1: Lying on your stomach — Duration: 30 minutes
Step 2: Lying on the Right Side — Duration: 30 minutes
Step 3: Sitting up at an angle between 60-90 degrees (Fowler position) — Duration: 30 minutes
Step 4: Lying on the Left Side — Duration: 30 minutes
Step 5: Return to your initial position

You can choose to extend the exercise from 30 minutes to 2 hours. All you need to ensure is that you are not in an uncomfortable position while proning.

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Are the effects of Proning permanent?

Even though proning seems the best way to improve oxygenation, it is yet to be seen whether its effects are permanent or it’s just one way to delay mechanical ventilation. Apart from that, it is advised that pregnant women, a person with spinal injury or history, increased intracranial pressure, and open abdomen wounds avoid proning at all costs. 

You should practice it only when you are awake. While sleeping, you can choose to sleep in your usual posture. 

These are some of the important things you should know about proning!

#StayHome #StaySafe

Also Read: Vaccine for 18+ above: How to apply? All you need to know!

Oxygen Saturation Level: What Is The Correct Level? All You Need To Know!

COVID -19 cases are surging across India. More than 3 lakh cases are registered daily, and yet India is left to attain its peak. With this increased number of cases surging every day, the health care system of India is on the verge of collapse.

The medical equipment shortages have now started to begin, and people are experiencing a lack of beds in the hospital. The second wave of COVID-19 has affected India more than its first wave. A great many number of people infected are experiencing serious respiratory problems.

People with prolonged diseases such as blood pressure problems or diabetes are affected more by it. As the virus targets the lungs, the need for oxygen is rising throughout the country. People are suffering to get an oxygen cylinder.

Many are stockpiling the cylinders for the worst case, not knowing how much this is affecting those who are really in need of oxygen.

People need to understand that not everyone would need an oxygen cylinder; neither everyone will have the same saturation level of oxygen.

We are writing today to discuss more around this: oxygen saturation levels, its correct and recommended level in which a COVID-19 patient should be in and the warning sign that tells you to prepare for worse scenarios.

Symptoms and early precautions

Quick recap on some of the most common symptoms of COVID-19:

  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Common cold symptoms such as sore throat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Diarrhoea
  • High Fever
  • Loss of smell and taste

[Also Watch: Start Double Masking Today: Here is How To #ProtectYourself​]

If these symptoms are detected at early stages, then the recovery process can be done at a much faster rate. Precautions that a person should take are:

  • Self-quarantining 
  • Daily yoga and exercise
  • Vitamin c enriched diet
  • Consultation with any healthcare advisor
  • Sanitizing and washing hands thoroughly after touching any surface.
  • Monitoring blood saturation level regularly on having any of COVID-19 symptoms.

What is a blood oxygen level?

Blood oxygen level is the level that allows the circulation of oxygen in your blood. This oxygen in the blood is carried out by red blood cells whose routine involves collecting oxygen from the lungs and distributing it to the other parts of the body.

The human body keeps blood oxygen levels and monitors them to keep them in a specified range. This ensures that every cell of the human body gets the oxygen they need.

Blood oxygen level indicates a person’s health and how the distribution of oxygen from the lungs to the cell is taking place. Different oxygen levels indicate other health conditions of a person.

The average oxygen saturation level

The average oxygen saturation level in the human body lies from 90 to 100 %. Below 90% is considered a low category level that requires close monitoring, and the patient may need oxygen.

Patients with oxygen saturation levels ranging from 92 -93 or 98 -99 may not require the use of oxygen. Only the close monitoring of the patients with 92-93 is recommended in this scenario. Many doctors advise not to take any high oxygen if the patient’s saturation level is in the range of 95-100.

People with chronic or acute respiratory diseases may require extra attention; a person with acute respiratory may need oxygen if its saturation level falls below 93. They should also immediately consult doctors for immediate oxygen supplementation.

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The low oxygen saturation level

If your oxygen saturation level falls below 94%, then it’s considered low, and the need for medical oxygen may arise. Extremely low saturation levels may result in a condition known as hypoxemia.

Symptoms of low oxygen saturation levels:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Restlessness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Sense of euphoria
  • Confusion
  • Visual disorders

How can you measure oxygen saturation levels?

With the help of a pulse oximeter, one can easily know their oxygen saturation levels. You just have to put any one of your fingers inside the oximeter; within seconds, your oxygen saturation level will be indicated on the oximeter screen.

If your oxygen saturation level drops below 94, you are recommended to get medical assistance immediately.

In these times, it’s indispensable for people to follow COVID-19 guidelines and follow a self-care and safety routine to stay healthy as the country is experiencing a shortage of medical supplies.

#StaySafe #StayHome 

Also Read: Vaccine for 18+ above: How to apply? All you need to know!

Vaccine for 18+ above: How to apply? All you need to know!

The second wave of Covid-19 is a deadly reminder that the battle against the virus is not over yet. Even though we are the largest vaccine producer in the world, we are far from being a vaccinated nation as a whole. The continuous surge in COVID-19 cases has forced the government to take some necessary actions in such situations. 

This includes the opening of a vaccination drive for all adults above the age of 18. This begins on May 1st, and registrations for the same starts from April 28 on the CoWin portal and the Arogya Setu App. 

Important Announcements by the Government

Apart from opening the vaccination drive for everyone above 18 years of age, the government also announced that other bodies like the state governments and private hospitals are allowed to approach the vaccine manufacturer directly. 

With the commencement of the third vaccination drive, the vaccine manufacturers will supply 50% of their lot to the central government. The rest 50% will be available for the open market, private hospitals and the state governments. 

The central government vaccination programme will continue as before for health professionals, frontline workers and citizens above 45 years of age. 

How to register for the COVID-19 vaccine on the CoWin platform?

  1. Visit www.cowin.gov.in.
  2. Click on Register/Sign In Yourself
  3. Enter your mobile number in the space provided, click get OTP.
  4. You will receive an OTP on your phone number. 
  5. Enter the received OTP and click “Verify”.
  6. The registration page for vaccination will open. Choose the photo ID proof you wish to upload.
  7. Fill in the necessary details like your name, age, and gender. Now upload an identity document.
  8. Click “Register”.
  9. Once you are done with registration, click on “Account Details”.
  10. Any registered citizen can choose to add three more people by clicking the “Add More” button. 
  11. Now click on the ‘Schedule appointment’ button to make an appointment.
  12. Depending on the choice of your state, district, block, and pin code, you can search a vaccination centre.
  13. The data and availability for the same vaccination centre will be displayed to you.
  14. Click ‘book’ to confirm the appointment. 
  15. Once confirmed, you will get a message with the necessary details. Show these details at the vaccination centre for verification. 

How to register for the COVID-19 vaccine on Arogya Setu App?

  1. Open Arogya Setu. If you don’t have it yet, you can download it from the Play Store. 
  2. On the homepage, tap on the ‘CoWIN’ tab.
  3. You will be able to see four options, namely – Vaccine Information, Vaccination, Vaccination Certificate, and Vaccination Dashboard.
  4. Select the “Vaccination” tab and then tap on “Register Now”.
  5. Enter your mobile number in the space provided and then tap “proceed to verify”.
  6. You’ll receive an OTP. Enter the same in the same provided and tap “proceed to verify” again.
  7. Once you’re done with mobile number verification, upload a photo ID card from your files.
  8. Fill in the necessary details like age, gender, year of birth.
  9. Unlike the CoWin portal, you can add four beneficiaries here.
  10. Depending on your choice of state, district, block, and pin code, the available vaccination sites will be displayed to you. 
  11. Choose any one that suits you the best and tap on the “Book” option.
  12. Once done, you will receive the necessary details through SMS. Show the same on the day of vaccination for verification.

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Many states have announced free vaccination for their people. States that are offering COVID-19 vaccine for free are:

  1. Karnataka
  2. Ladakh
  3. Delhi
  4. Odisha
  5. Uttarakhand
  6. Gujarat
  7. Rajasthan
  8. Maharashtra
  9. Assam
  10. Bihar
  11. Madhya Pradesh
  12. Sikkim

Which vaccines are available in the country?

Mainly two vaccines available to the citizens of the country right now. One is Covishield, which is developed and marketed by Serum Institute of India. The other one is Covaxin, which has been developed by Bharat BioTech Ltd. Apart from these two vaccines, Sputnik V of Russia has been approved too, considering its high effectiveness. 

Will the vaccination help in stopping COVID-19 in our country?

People need to understand that while lockdowns might slow down the widespread, they are not a permanent fix. Getting vaccinated will alleviate the risk and complications of contracting the disease. This is the only way to win over the virus for once and all. Currently, only one per cent of our population has been vaccinated. So, it’s important that even after getting vaccinated, you follow the basic norms and precautions to save yourself and the people around you. 

#StayHome #StaySafe

How To Manage When You Are Alone And COVID-19 Positive?

The sudden spike in the number of cases all over the country has left everyone in shock. The second wave of COVID-19 is putting the healthcare systems through a rigorous test. In such conditions, it’s best for each one of us to stay at home and wait for things to get better. 

However, many of us aren’t actually at ‘home’ with family right now. Many among us reside in different cities for work or education and live alone. The worst possible scenario in such a state comes when we find ourselves either COVID-19 positive or experience some major symptoms.

So, here are a few tips you should follow when you are alone: 

Stock up the essentials   

Have a look around through the eyes of a sick person. Analyze the essentials that you would require in case of sickness. 

Do not wait for your conditions to get worse. Stock up these essentials now, when you are fully fit to move. Easy-to-prepare healthy foods, drinks for regular hydration, supplies like Pulse Oximeter, thermometer, and the essential medications must be there in your house when you need them.   

Examine the symptoms  

Anyone needs to examine their symptoms first. Considering the fake rumours and messages being sent all over, you may not be familiar with the basic symptoms of COVID-19. The basic symptoms of COVID-19 include loss of smell and taste, headache, fever, cough, sore throat, muscle ache, diarrhoea and shortness of breath. In the mild and moderate state, many of these can be managed at home easily. Some older patients might only show fatigue and weakness, and yet they could be COVID-19 positive.

So, it’s important to notice the symptoms first and work your way accordingly. You might be feeling better right now, but there is a possibility that things might change in the second week of infection.

Seek out medical advice

If you have started experiencing the symptoms already, reach out to a doctor immediately. Seek advice, medications and the tests that you need to get done. In the case of older adults, make sure the doctor is aware of any medical history like cardiovascular disease, varying blood pressure, diabetes, etc

Since seeing a doctor physically would not be the best option right now, get in touch with someone who has a telemedicine facility. 

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Stay hydrated and take proper rest

Since fever and diarrhoea are two major classic symptoms of COVID-19, make sure you hydrate yourself regularly. To ensure minimal movement, always keep a bottle or two by the side of your bed. Feeling lightheaded, the decline in urine output, dry mouths are the major signs you are not hydrating yourself enough.

Apart from that, soups, tea with honey or ginger, fruits, and decoctions are the choices you should rely on to maintain your immunity. 

Track your vitals regularly

Monitoring your fever is the first thing you have to do. You need to keep your body temperature below 100 at all times. One countermeasure to do so is to take medicines prescribed by the doctor.

If you are feeling congestions or uneasiness in breathing, you can choose to take steam vapours or get yourself a decoction. You can also use an inhaler to ease your breathing too. You can also choose to take a shower with mild-warm water, but only when your temperature is below 100. Also, report the same to your doctor once in a while. 

Reach out to your close ones

Although you might be living alone for a long time, and think that you don’t need anyone for help. Yet this is the best time to get in touch with your close ones immediately. Set up video calls, chats, or voice calls to stay in touch with one or two of your trusted people. Also, check out those who might need your help. See what works the best for you and make it a part of your routine.

Don’t ignore your mental health

Most of us are quite careless towards our mental health. We don’t give it the attention it demands. So, in your time of sickness, be prepared, stay focused and stay away from any kind of negativity during this period. Check out the stuff that keeps you happy, be it memes, games, videos, hobbies etc., while following your routine strictly at the same time. 

So, these were the tips that you need to follow to manage yourself when you test COVID-19 positive and are alone at home. While mild and moderate symptoms can be easily managed at home, yet you should plan for the worst. Pack a bag with a spare toothbrush, medications, medical insurance, and earphones as you might need the same in case of emergency. It’s better to be prepared rather than just ignoring the basics for some other time. 

Apart from that, wishing you a healthy and happy recovery. #StaySafe

ALSO READ: Pregnancy In A Pandemic!

India’s Oxygen Status: What’s The Real Story?

The second COVID-19 wave has left the medical facilities in complete shambles. It has shown us that the established system is not enough to deal with the rising cases. With the rapid spike of COVID-19 cases all over the country, the netizens of the country have started questioning the government. 

On Wednesday, the number of cases rose to 3 lakhs, while the death counter was close to 2,000. Hospitals are overcrowded, beds aren’t available, patients are seen with cylinders on roads, and not much has been offered by the government yet. In such a situation, many are forced to leave their home to fetch the oxygen cylinders for the loved ones, who are battling COVID-19 right now. 

However, the only thing they were able to fetch was hopelessness. The country is undergoing a severe oxygen crisis currently, and the cylinders which were easily available at INR 100-150 can cost up to INR 800-900 today. 

The capacity and the demand

India produces 6900 metric ton of liquid oxygen daily. Out of the total produced, 5000 metric tonnes is being delivered to the hospitals and the industries combined. 

Due to the sudden rise in cases, the current supply to hospitals is at 2,500 metric tonne which is far less than the total produced. 

Then, how come we are facing a crisis? Something doesn’t add up, right? 

The logistics system in India

In a recent interview, health secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas shared that, “The issue is not of supply, it is of transportation and storage”. He added that the system in India was enough until now. However, with the exponential rise in demand, this needs to change. In the past 6 months, the demand for medical oxygen has risen by 3X. 

Medical oxygen in India takes roughly 3 days to reach from the manufacturer to the end-user. Once prepared, this oxygen is transported using tankers, which are currently 1200-1500 in number. Earlier, these were enough to meet the daily demand by the hospitals but now they are not. 

One of the biggest oxygen manufacturers in India is Inox. The manufacturer alone supplies 1400 tonnes of oxygen daily through its network of 550 transportation tankers. These tankers are directed to around 800 hospitals all over India. While these were enough to meet the daily demands comfortably, now the company believes they might fall in short. 

In such a situation, the central government has directed the states to use nitrogen tankers to deal with the urgent oxygen demand. Maharashtra government was able to get 8 tankers to add to the previous list of supply tankers.

Storage system

A COVID-19 patient in his critical condition requires up to 60 litres of oxygen per minute. This implies that a cylinder can last up to an hour max, depending upon the oxygen being given to the patient.

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Considering this, any hospital would require a good amount of storage capacity. However, such facilities are not present in rural areas, as there was never a need for any. Different states are experimenting with different methods, from the installation of oxygen tanks to buying jumbo cylinders. 

Some states have even started the construction of oxygen generation plants. While this might benefit us in the future, the present is yet to be addressed. 

Rise in prices due to COVID-19

An oxygen cylinder used to cost between INR 100 to INR 150. To refill the same, you had to pay INR 1.5 to 2 per cubic metre. Post pandemic, the price of a cylinder has risen to INR 800. Moreover, the refill costs you INR 10-15 per cubic metre. 

Due to the fear of getting COVID-19, people are stocking up cylinders at home. Apart from that, the rise in logistics prices has contributed to the cylinder price too. Private hospitals are charging INR 1500-3000 for a patient per day. However, the actual cost is around INR 300-400 per cylinder.

Considering all this, the government of India has advised hospitals to monitor the oxygen levels of patients daily. The hospitals are also advised to provide oxygen support to only those whose saturated oxygen levels are below 94. Apart from that, the government has also banned the sale of oxygen to industries, especially those who rely on furnaces for production. Recently, the Indian Railways also announced the launch of “Oxygen Express”, which will help in carrying oxygen cylinders all over the country for quick delivery.

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ALSO READ: COVID-19 Tips: Pregnancy In A Pandemic!