The central dispensation’s philanthropic guidelines with regard to grant of permission to COVID-19 patients to interact with families by using smartphones and tablet devices is a welcome step and those States and UTs which prohibit such provision should immediately give a nod for this bountiful exercise as the same is very significant as far as moral and psychological support to the aforesaid ailing lot admitted in isolation wards is concerned. After states and UTs green signal the hospitalised COVID-19 patients can interact with family and friends through video conferencing giving them respite from stress of disease and distance from dear ones. Through a visionary decision, Director General of Health Services (DGHS) in the Union Health Ministry Dr Rajiv Garg in a communiqué to the concerned Principal Secretaries of various States and Union Territories has averred that SOP for disinfecting silicon devices and allotting timeslots can be chalked out by the respective hospitals to facilitate connectivity between patients and their loved ones. Surely, this will give much needed boost to healing process by way of enthusing ‘happiness’ as factor to strengthen patient immunity. A much needed step showing the dexterity and concern of those sitting at helm to manage COVID-19 infection. Though, in J&K there is no such issue as patients are not barred from taking their cell phones along with them inside hospitals but reportedly many other states and UTs have prohibited the same and people are finding it difficult to contact their families while spending time in isolation. One thing which came out from decision is that administrative and medical teams should understand their responsibility in catering to the psychological needs of patients admitted in COVID-19 wards and ICUs of various hospitals which in turn will reinforce the needful confidence in patients to overcome the dilemma and get ready to fight the infection with full might.
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