Health workers in Kashmir walk several kms in snowbound areas to vaccinate people

Written By: Idrees Lone WION
Srinagar, India Published: Jan 11, 2022, 05:11 PM(IST)

In this picture, doctors in Kashmir can be seen with COVID-19 vaccination equipment  Photograph:( WION )

Story highlights

Despite the excruciating cold and completely snow-covered roads, these health workers in Kashmir Valley are braving the harsh weather conditions and going door to door to vaccinate people

There is an old saying in India that says Doctors are second to God on this Earth. And the health workers in Kashmir Valley are proving this saying right. Despite the excruciating cold and completely snow-covered roads, these health workers in Kashmir Valley are braving the harsh weather conditions and going door to door to vaccinate people. 

In a far-flung area of Kashmir Valley called Fakir Gujri, a team of health workers carrying vaccination boxes and other materials starts their vaccination drive while walking on the snow-covered narrow lanes of this mountainous region. They walk for kilometres knocking on the doors of people to get the vaccine shot. 

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''It's difficult to work in these areas, we can't take our cars in these areas and we have to walk for 1-2 kms along with the vaccine boxes and other things. Then we go door to door and motivate the people to get these shots. We are also focusing on teenagers now. We have come to Faqir Gujri area which is a far-flung area completely covered in snow and are going to houses asking them to vaccinate. The recently started booster dose for people above the age of 60 and that is being done too. We are specially going for older people who can't walk in these conditions and vaccinating them.'' said Rouf Ahmad, Covid Warrior. 

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The doctors in the valley say to get rid of Covid-19 there is no other way but to vaccinate people in every corner of the Valley. The snow and minus-degree temperatures are in no way bringing down the morale of these doctors working continuously in the higher reaches of Kashmir. 

''It's very hard for us to reach these areas but for the benefit of the people, we have approached here. We have started door to door vaccinations from today, infact yesterday. We have already vaccinated 7 cases so far in the snow. We are giving precautionary doses. We have to keep in mind the benefit of the people. We have been facing the pandemic since 2019 and to get rid of it, we have to approach everyone to get these doses. '' said Dr Seema Ashraf, Nodal Officer, Vaccination. 

The people in these higher reaches have appreciated the move of the health department. They say that people above the age group of 60 are not able to move in these weather conditions and to have health workers at their doorstep is a great move by the department. 

''We are thankful to the staff for having come so far to vaccinate us. It's my first vaccine dose and I finally got it. Everyone is now coming forward to Vaccinate. It's difficult for the old people to move in these weather conditions and having these doctors coming at our doorstep is what we are thankful for.'' said Abdul Khalid Ganai, Senior Citizen. 

The health department of Kashmir has constituted similar teams in every remote village of the valley. The teams every morning is leaving the health centres and going door to door to vaccinate people in these accumulated areas. 

Around 6,88,286 lakh people are to be administered these booster doses during this drive. Among them are 1,06245 Health workers, 3,17,631 lakhs are frontline workers which include Police and Paramilitary forces, and 2,64,410 people above 60 years of age with comorbidities. 

The children in the age group of 15-18 are being vaccinated as well. There are around 8.33 lakh children in that age bracket in which half of them have already been vaccinated. The government says the other half will be inoculated within days. 

Jammu Kashmir has been among the topmost states to vaccinate the maximum number of people. The health workers of the valley have been appreciated by everyone including the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi. 

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