Flipping roles with ease, she shines light on vaccination


Express News Service

ERNAKULAM: Her work solely entails supervising. But she fills a variety of roles, including those of a vaccinator, data entry operator, observer, awareness creator and trainer. From tackling people’s hesitation to calming the crowd at vaccination centres, Usha Kumari R — Lady Health Inspector at the Pandappilly community health centre (CHC) in Muvattupuzha — has done it all. 

The 54-year-old supervises the vaccination wing at the CHC, and the awareness sessions she provides during the observation period has received good response from both local residents and those arriving from afar. People come from all across the district, including Fort Kochi and Aluva, to attend her classes.

“After taking the jab, we have to sit anxiously for the next 20-30 minutes. But if someone takes the time to engage our minds by explaining how all of this works, it calms us down. With her gestures and jokes, Usha ensures that we listen. The experience at the Pandappilly CHC has been unique. Those who have taken the first dose there will certainly not miss the second,” said Teji K, a resident of Meenkunnam. 

The vaccination for senior citizens has been under way in the state since March. When individuals were first reluctant to take the jab, she made it her mission to visit a few people’s houses and educate them. When the crowds at the CHC became too much for any staff to handle, she made it a point to work late, even until 8pm, to vaccinate as many as possible.

“The staff for supervision, data input, vaccination and patient observation work in the vaccination wing. It is challenging due to the crowd. On some days, I administered more than 100 doses from noon,” said Palakkuzha native Usha. There were evenings when we delivered jabs with mobile flashlight as there was no power supply, she said.

“People travelling over 30-40km to visit the centre after hearing about it from others is a huge compliment. To my astonishment, four senior men in their 60s told me that they did not come for vaccination but for my sessions. It was a joyous occasion. Positive feedback gives us hope and motivates us to keep going,” Usha said.

She is an inspiration to all the staff and healthcare workers during the pandemic times, said Dr George K A, medical officer-in-charge of Pandappilly CHC.

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