Dr. Piyush Bhise recalls his unusual journey, “It feels wonderful to come back. The duration of admission in the hospital and getting discharged was almost a month.”

On 29 March, Piyush got admitted to the hospital, and he got discharged on 12 April. His happiness to go back to the family did not stay long; the government has changed the rules to make the patients quarantine at a COVID care center. After coming back from the care center, he quarantined at home for another fourteen days. “When you are locked inside the room for quarantine, you come in contact with humanity. I had lost touch with the outer world. When I stepped out of the room, it felt utterly lost. The world seemed like a dream. I stayed at the street for the time being to connect to the outer world again,” he says about his home quarantine experience.

As a doctor’s life around the patients and long appointments. Working for long hours made Piyush suspicious of getting in contact with the infection somehow. He quarantined himself at the hospital rather than going home and risking everyone’s life. “I saw it coming,” said Piyush.

A lady had come to their hospital, feverish. She had collapsed inside the hospital premises. Piyush tried his best to save the woman. In 2-3 hours she was present there and asked her to get shifted in the government hospital. Unfortunately, she died after reaching there.

The entire world collapsed for Piyush when he and his staff who dealt with the ill woman had found positive. They went voluntarily for the tests.

“At that moment, our qualifications, credibility, and knowledge crash down when we know the test is positive in spite of taking all the precautions,” Piyush expressed his grief over his positive result. “We all know there is no treatment, no vaccine, and everybody just responds differently to the disease.”

He was asymptomatic. After admission, he started reading everything about COVID-19, every journal and turned every page on google. The only concern he had was about his parents; he wished they should not get dragged into this. Piyush suffered from chest pain, but he tolerated the illness well.

Piyush has always been in an air-conditioned atmosphere, and suddenly, he got shifted in a ward full of humidity. He sweated a lot, drank lots of water. Due to which he couldn’t eat. He was always trembling, couldn’t stand, and drained out of energy. “At such a stage, we only think about getting out of the situation. I am a foodie. Diet did not meet my expectations. I talked on the phone to my parents about how much I miss homemade meals. Being a doctor, I got a separate ward. I enjoyed the comfort and got my ambiance and got the cooler too,” Piyush said about his hospital stay.
It was time for Piyush to return back home. And this return was special!
His entire colony was present for his welcome. They had pooja thali, flowers and garlands. Piyush couldn’t control his emotions for the kind of support he received. Piyush was out of words to express his gratitude.

Piyush’s friends and family encouraged him to post inspirational videos about his journey. He saw some examples on social media and youtube; most of them he found were awareness videos urging people to wear the mask and wash hands. Most were from ICUs. They were asking people not to go outside, not even on the street.

But instead of fear, Piyush wanted to use the element of positivity, eliminating all the negative aspects. “In the video, I asked people not to panic and take your medicine regularly, follow doctor’s advice and get rid of the worry. There are discriminative things around. We should ignore it for our betterment,” Piyush didn’t miss to highlight the stigma surrounding the survivors and healthcare workers in the video he posted on social media.

Piyush also recalls how people blamed him for negligence and suggested that he should have avoided feverish patients.

“I took precautions and kept oral consultancy with proper distance and PPE.” I did the best I could do, adds Piyush.

“When patients increase, phobia goes down; when patients are less, everyone is peculiar;” Piyush rightly points towards people’s general reaction towards the virus.

Dr Piyush, the Corona Champion, intends to send a simple message to everyone fearing virus. “Don’t panic. There are many more recovered cases in India as compared to other nations. Indian people are fighting well. Few people have complications, need ventilators, and don’t come back. Even if the lockdown eases, older people, or those with hypertension, diabetes has to take extra care. When you go to a doctor, please listen when the doctor advises you to get an x-ray done. If they ask you to get a swab done, please get it done. Try to educate people about the situation and spread awareness. The people don’t intentionally discriminate. It is either because of the fear, or they have less knowledge of the situation. Only 10 % of people will stigmatize you, we cannot go and tell everyone. So the best way is to ignore it. So don’t worry, eat healthily, recover faster.”

Our brave #CoronaChampions continues to spread awareness and break the stigma through their real-life stories and experiences. Please join this movement by sharing this story and helping people who are seeking support and motivation during this pandemic.

Our brave #CoronaChampions continues to spread awareness and break the stigma through their real-life stories and experiences. Please join this movement by sharing this story and helping people who are seeking support and motivation during this pandemic.

By Ms.Rakhi Vishwakarma