Medical crisis in Kashmir

Because each time I talk about it people remind me that it’s for Kashmir’s own good that they’ve been cut off from the rest of the world, I thought I’d write something so we can all empathize and may be better understand what happens when people can’t reach a doctor on time.

Imagine your patient is on dialysis! Imagine he misses the bus that transports him to the dialysis center. Imagine what his potassium can do in the meantime. Imagine how he can have significant metabolic acidosis or a hyperkalemic cardiac arrest. Imagine this being some people’s reality in Kashmir right now.

Imagine being pregnant. Imagine knowing you’re high-risk. Imagine the contractions starting. Imagine the baby coming. Imagine your worst fears coming true. Imagine experiencing arrest of labor, a suspected still birth, a premature rupture of membranes with a history of GBS positive culture. Imagine your baby born but with pneumonia and meningitis to consider. Imagine you dreading a fourth degree tear with no medical help. Imagine you running the risk of endometritis. Imagine this being some women’s reality in Kashmir.

Imagine being a child with leukemia. You need chemo therapy. You need prevention from infections. You need to be in close contact with your doctor. You take medication and antibiotics that prevent infections. Everyday you miss a cycle. Everyday you face a relapse. Imagine this being the reality of affected children in Kashmir.

When a war happens some people advocate for the women, children and elderly to leave the area. But that was probably when wars were happening centuries ago. Today, men in their thirties have cardiac illnesses and they would also fit the bill for the ineligibility criteria for who can’t be a part of the hardships of a war. Many men in their twenties are battling cancers. That reduces their eligibility also.

But wars happened in olden days because we weren’t good with communicating. Human beings hadn’t mastered the art of communication and diplomatic conversations. Why should we have a war now? Why should we unleash force on people? We have advanced understanding of effectively transmitting our message. We have foreign policies that have communication and diplomacy as their cornerstones. If we still are at the verge of a potentially unstable situation in Kashmir then it’s shameful for the human race.

Before you say there isn’t war in Kashmir I should tell you that I agree with you. There isn’t a war. There is a one-sided infliction of force on unarmed people.

Also, this unrest shouldn’t cause people to lose their lives. Every life is precious. Every medical condition is worth our attention.

So if you are a human who has ever suffered from a medical condition, even a minor one, think about it. If you’re a physician who has ever practiced medicine, think about it.

Would you say it’s for the people’s own good if they can’t access medical care?

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