Churachandpur: At a time when news of death and despair has surrounded us, it seems every story of hope and positivity can breathe fresh life into what seems like a never-ending fight against COVID-19. Sangpu, a 29-year-old frontline worker from Churchandpur, showed a great presence of mind in times of distress. Thanks to his quick thinking and innovative ideas, he saved four COVID-19 patients on oxygen support at the Churachandpur district hospital in Manipur.

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The incident happened on May 3, when the district hospital oxygen supply was out almost of stock. This caused chaos and anxiety among the healthcare staff, as four critical COVID patients needed continued oxygen support.

Narrating the harrowing incident, Sangpu, who works as a multitasking staff on a contractual basis at the district hospital, said that the oxygen supply was out of stock. The team had gone to Imphal for a refill and were yet to return, even as oxygen for four patients was running out.

That’s when the hospital administration and staff went into panic mode,. as only two filled oxygen cylinders were left at the hospital. 

However, Sangpu, a resident of New Lamka village, remembered the technique of improvising the oxygen system which he came across on the internet a long time ago.

“I suggested the idea to the doctor who is heading the team, and that is how they implemented the idea and improvised the oxygen from the two filled cylinders. And we could continue to provide the oxygen to the four patients who are in critical conditions,” said Sangpu, who also worked earlier as a volunteer at COVID-19 care centre before joining the hospital.

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Sangpu, who has been working for seven months, often spends works every day of the week. However, this young frontline worker does not have any regrets about joining the service as he feels honoured and privileged to contribute in such a manner to society, especially during this critical juncture.

“During this pandemic, to be able to contribute to society in such a positive manner and to be one among those positive inputs for the society, and at least able to help the sick people instead of me getting sick, it’s an honour and privilege,” said Sangpu with a beaming smile.

“It is not a momentous task that I have done, but it feels good when people recognise and acknowledge you for your little contribution made towards society,” added Sangpu.

Sangpu’s parents, who run a shop in Churachandpur Bazaar, now depend on him as they are unable to run their business due to the pandemic restrictions.

Meanwhile, in times of a medical emergency, YPA Hiangtam Lamka, a philanthropic organisation based in the Churachandpur district, is also lending oxygen cylinders to the district hospital free of cost. They have been providing at least two to three oxygen cylinders (B-type) once or twice a week to the hospital.

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