It was too much for him, enough to drive him to suicide. A young Pakistani doctor from Sindh apparently decided that death was better than living with the constant fear of contracting COViD-19 because of lack of protective gear.
It has, again, placed a spotlight on the lack of preparedness the Pakistan government is in to fight the coronavirus pandemic and the lack of support for healthcare workers.
A Facebook post, reportedly written by a friend details the horrific incident.
Dr. Tahir Almani belonged to Tando Muhammad Khan district in Sindh. He was a resident of Village Sono Khan Almani, serving as an anaesthetist at the ICU department of Liaquat University Hospital, in the city of Jamshoro.
The facility is part of the Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences.
According to the post, Almani was 27 years old and had “a well-settled and reputed family background”.
The post also stated that the doctor had sent in a resignation to the hospital administration which asked him to carry out a lengthy process in response. The length of the procedure was so long that the young doctor had to apply for leaves but he was not granted the amount of days he wanted, and he was called back to work.
Allegedly, soon after, the doctor carried out his first suicide attempt followed by a second one that resulted in his death.
“After 7 days leave, he was called to rejoin the duty but he refused and when pressure increased he attempted suicide by wrist cutting 15 days ago, but he remained safe, after that he remained at home in isolation for some days and he joined duty again and just after two days of joining he committed suicide because the fear of being COVID positive didn’t go away and he finally decided to end his life,” the post read.
Signed off by Dr Faizan Hussain Memon, Secretary of Information for Young Doctors Association Hyderabad, the post ended with: “ […] believe me this is not suicide of Dr. Tahir Almani, it was suicide of our hospital administration, it was suicide of our government, it was suicide of dreams of dignity of white coat.”
Several reports of medical professionals in the country being mistreated and lacking Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) have surfaced amidst the ongoing coronavirus crisis.
Recently, a female doctor from Pakistan posted a video claiming that she was forced to work without proper protective measures and contracted COVID-19. She also said that she continued to work after getting infected.