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May 16, 2021

Doctors overlooked families in Ramazan for patients

In Ramazan, a majority of doctors working in the hospitals of Rawalpindi and Islamabad traditionally used to have ‘sehris’ and ‘iftars’ with their families. This Ramazan because of the dangerous the third wave of coronavirus pandemic, they remained away from their dear ones because of carrying out their professional duties at hospitals.

“This year’s Ramazan was unique for us the doctors as we observed the holy month in a different atmosphere, and what we went through this Ramazan represents a pivotal historical moment and a page in the contemporary history of the medical profession,” says Dr. Bano Rizvi from Shifa Hospital.

“Except doctors’ families, all other people ate ‘sehri’ and had their ‘iftar’ with their families, but the doctors and paramedical staff separated from their dear ones because of the day-night duties, missed the customary familial spirit,” says Dr. Kiran Zahra.

“For doctors especially the female doctors like me working at odd hours, lonely ‘sehri’ and ‘iftar’ this Ramazan have been mostly occupied with thoughts of our family members,” says tearful Dr. Aouj Fatima.

“This Ramazan because of professional responsibility I remained confined to my hospital and did not know what my loved ones were doing. I missed my family. Breaking fast with the family members is a blessing and I missed that, “says Dr. Emaan Haider, 30, working at Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS).

“All my family members — my life-partner, two sons and, one daughter used to break the fast along with me in the dining room of our house. This Ramazan I remained engaged day and night with my patients in the hospital and missed my loved ones at the time of ‘sehr’ and ‘iftar’ except for the off-days,” says Dr. Nur-ul-Huda Kazmi working at Holy Family Hospital.

“For all the doctors in the city, thoughts of their family members troubled them while having ‘sehri and ‘iftar’ alone this Ramazan,” says Dr. Sahar Batool, Dr. Nur-ul-Huda Kazmi’s colleague.

“All my colleagues were keeping fasts. At ‘Sehri’ time we ate whatever we could get and broke the fast with water and dates but the hospital administration was not worried about us,” says Dr. Syeda Sameen Jafri working at Shaheed Benazir Hospital.

“We were fasting during Ramazan but unfortunately the District Hospital administration provided us neither ‘sehri’ nor ‘iftar’ food, while private hospitals provided doctors with ‘parathas’, chicken curry, yogurt, and tea served at ‘Sehri’ and with ‘biryani’, sweet rice, ‘samosas’, and ‘pakoras’ at ‘Iftar’,” says tearful Dr. Fatima Zahra.

Dr. Alya Abbas from Fauji Foundation Hospital says, “Even though social distancing runs counter to the very essence of Ramazan, which emphasizes reconnecting with loved ones, we are giving more time to patients to earn Allah’s pleasure.”