Chandni’s COVID Story

Chandni’s COVID Story

In school, we’ve been doing a hybrid of both physical and online learning. We go to the wards physically but the lectures are online.

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I haven’t been able to achieve what I thought I would have achieved by certain timelines because the pandemic slowed things down and slowed me down. Emotionally, we really didn’t have the mental capacity during the pandemic to do anything big because there was so much uncertainty. Secondly, financially everything slowed down. You really weren’t able to start up anything new because again, there was a lot of uncertainty about what the economic trajectory would be like. The financial bit was both a family thing and I’d also have been able to do jobs for writing and stuff that pays, but during the pandemic, many businesses were closed or, if they were open, they weren’t hiring anyone extra – they were just doing the basic minimum. So it cut off income supply both for the family and at an individual level. I’m back to doing the writing thing now though. Academically, some of my work has even been published. Also socially, during the pandemic, we were all really scared about meeting each other.

A positive impact of COVID is that I had a lot of time on my hands. There weren’t any schedules I was following, it was just me making my own schedules. I was able to learn research and then take up a research topic and write about it. The papers I’ve published – one was an oral presentation and the other was a publication – were done during COVID.

Since we were all in isolation, whether we were sick or not, it gave us time to reflect on how we’ve grown and what we want. Despite the uncertainty, we had time to think about ourselves and generally not think about anyone else because we weren’t really seeing people. It was a time when you were able to work on personal growth. Before we used to set goals every new year, but during the pandemic, it was like a whole different year. It was an opportunity to restrategise. We all kind of thought about new ways to adapt. We all learnt that we were stronger than we thought.

One of my goals was the research bit. The goal was to start learning how to do research and actually publish during the time of the pandemic, which I did. Currently, I want to do more. Right now I’ve done a narrative review but I learned much more: meta-analysis, how to do regional research. So that’s still a goal I have to get to.

During the pandemic, for us people in the healthcare profession, it gave us a lot of insight into the weakness of the healthcare system. We were able to look at all the small loopholes our healthcare system has in terms of insurance and taking care of people at the grassroots level. We kind of thought about public health measures like how to improve the health outcomes of those who don’t have much. That’s something I’m personally still looking to improve. It’s an uphill task. During the pandemic, I realised we need more people on the ground. So as other people do the research, I’ll be there to implement it.

In school, we’ve been doing a hybrid of both physical and online learning. We go to the wards physically but the lectures are online. First of all, you weren’t able to see your classmates while you were in the lecture so it becomes kind of monotonous. Like there’s a joke but you’re laughing on your own. Then things take a while to stick because it’s hard to concentrate due to the lack of physical touch. The physical touch to learning, I think, is something so important.