Imphal: The global pandemic has taken a toll on every person, including health workers at the frontline of this fight. The never-ending shifts and the daily sight of death and despair can weaken even the toughest of people. But people continue to fight and find new ways to do so. 

In Manipur’s Imphal West district, Maibam Ranita Devi, a 34-year-old frontline worker, is spreading hope and positive vibes among COVID-19 patients, currently in home isolation or isolation community centre.

Ranita, a trained nurse working as a community health officer (CHO) at the Health and Wellness Centre (HWC) Awang at Wabagai Leikinthabi village is motivating her patients through dance movement therapy, which she feels is making a significant impact.

At present, there are around 21 COVID-19 patients at the Centre. Apart from regular teleconsultation, Ranita helps her patients through dance therapy.

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A yoga enthusiast herself, Ranita said, “I have experienced myself that if we do Dance Movement Therapy (DMT) session, our whole body gets active and creativity in our minds, which makes me relax. So, I thought of applying to patients, those who are in home isolation.”

However, not every patient is the same. “We need to develop a good rapport because some patients don’t want to admit that they are COVID-19 positive due to social stigma and social discrimination,” Ranita, a mother of two children, added. 

As a frontline worker in direct contact with the patients, Ranita also observed that many patients, especially those in home isolation, are stressed out. “Many patients often tell me that they are scared and stressed thinking about the situation they are in. And they used to have sleepless nights. So, I tried to create my positive energy and impart them to my patients,” added Ranita.

In 2019, in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the community healthcare sector, Ranita was awarded the National Florence Nightingale Award by the President of India.

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