On May 28 a pregnant woman from Manchar was admitted to the Yashwantrao Chavan Memorial Hospital (YCM) in Pimpri when she tested positive. The woman who had travelled from Mumbai was nearing the end of her pregnancy and on June 6 delivered a healthy girl child.
The new born tested negative for COVID and when the hospital decided to discharge her on Tuesday, the question rose before her relatives on who will take care of the new born child. In a show of kinsmanship and community feeling the women members and employees of Manchar gram panchayat immediately volunteered not only to bring the infant from the COVID ward of the hospital but also to look after the child.
The saga started unfolding when the YCM authorities contacted the sarpanch Datta Ganjale asking him to get the child discharged from the hospital. This posed a challenge for the authorities as not only the immediate family but also her other relatives like uncle and aunt were put in quarantine as they were high risk contacts of the patient. Archana Bende and Sneha Misal, two lady employees of the gram panchayat, were then asked by the sarpanch if they were willing to go to the hospital and get the child to the village.
“YCM is a dreaded place given its association with the COVID pandemic. But we decided to go as the new born child needed to be brought from there,” recollected Archana who works in the account department of the gram panchayat. But when they reached the hospital both Archana and Sneha were foxed when they learned the child was on the fourth floor of the hospital. “With my gloves and mask on I managed to get to the fourth floor of the hospital where the nurse handed me over the child.While I had my sanitizer with me, the nurse asked me to be spare with it as I was carrying the child,”said Archana.
Back in the village, one of the floors of the gram panchayat office was made into a make shift nursery and Archana and Sneha decided to stay with the child for the night. “I have an 8-year-old daughter but my mother-in-law urged me to stay with the child for the night,” she said.
The story had a happy ending when on Wednesday the uncle and aunt of the child tested negative and the mother too recovered. “The mother and child will be reunited to soon,” she said.
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