Unwell Charvi Saraf unable to get a Covid-19 test done in Delhi
Updated Jun 12, 2020
She started her letter, shared with IANS, by saying: "I have Covid-19 symptoms, but is getting a test done too much to ask for in Delhi?"
Ever since the lockdown was announced in March, she has been in Delhi, which is her hometown.
"We were homebound and like everyone else, we only used to step out for buying essentials. Everything seemed fairly okay, and healthy. We had adjusted to the new corona lifestyle," she said in the letter.
It was last week that she started feeling uneasy.
"My body temperature kept picking up and dropping. Soon I started having high fever, with a lot of body ache, breathlessness, pain in throat and headache. Of course like anyone would, I started panicking and wondering if I am suffering from Covid-19. Moreover, I was scared for my family. I didn't want anything to happen to them, so I decided to quarantine myself," said Charvi.
The first thing in her mind was to get a test done but little did she know that even getting a test done in Delhi was a task in itself.
"I made a few calls to the doctors who had been treating us for years. They said they don't have Covid-19 test kits with them, which I understand. Then I called up a few private hospitals nearby. They refused saying the facility was not available there. All I wanted was someone to come over and do my tests as I wasn't in the right position to go to the hospital to get it tested. Then I made a few calls to some goverment hospitals. They asked me to consult my doctor as it could be viral. I even contacted the Covid-19 helpline, they said they are already full till next week. By this time I got desperate, only to get a test done," she said.
"It's been five days now. My attempts for getting a test done have been futile. If getting a test done is such a task for me, how difficult will it be for people who don't have the right contact of doctors or who aren't in the best of health to make such efforts, or the poor people who have to stand in long queues in government hospitals where the risk is higher, and can't even afford the fees of private labs.
"I am an actor and I lead a regular life like everyone else. All I need is a Covid test so that my family and I know whether we are safe or not. Is it too much to ask for?"
She concluded the letter by saying: "There are people who show symptoms and still do not come out in open to speak and there are people like me who wish to know the truth by getting tests done, but is the government and hospitals really interested in people like us?"