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An eye check-up and a cataract surgery camp in Barwani, Madhya Pradesh created a lot of furor after the patients complained of disturbed vision following the operation. Around 30-35 people took part in the camp held during November 16 to 24. Soon, reports began to flood in from patients complaining of irritation and blurred vision resulting from infection. 32 patients are currently facing possible vision loss.
“When their condition deteriorated and were referred to another ophthalmologist, it was revealed that they were on the brink of losing their eyesight,” said Sharad Pandit, the joint director of health in Indore, who ordered an inquiry into the matter. “It is unfortunate that this happened at a government camp.”
Around the same time, Dr Charanjit Singh of charitable society ‘Sarv Kalyan Sewarth Samithi’ conducted yet another eye check-up camp in Ambala, Haryana. He charged Rs 6,000 to Rs 10,000 from each of the patients who underwent cataract removal surgery in the congested Mahesh Nagar locality on November 24. Of them, 15 patients soon developed infection in their eyes.
They were later admitted to Chandigarh’s Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), where 11 have received complete treatment, while one is in critical condition and stares at blindness.
Dr VK Gupta, a civil surgeon in Ambala, filed a case against Dr Charanjit alleging that he did not have the required permission to conduct the charitable eye camp. The callous attitude of the management and the unhygienic conditions are the main reasons behind the debacle.
Botched up surgeries are definitely very common in India, especially in the medical camps conducted in rural areas and city outskirts which are far from district hospitals. While medical camps like these bring healthcare to those who cannot afford the traveling cost of going to hospitals situated far away, the possible negative effects far outweigh the positives.
Around the same time last year, in a horrific incident, a government-run mass sterilization camp in Chattisgarh’s Bilaspur district went haywire and resulted in the death of 15 women. Of the 83 women who underwent laparoscopic tubectomies, over 50 were hospitalized with 25 in critical conditions.
Government directives allow a maximum number of 30 operations in a camp in a single day. It’s not uncommon for districts to receive 15,000 operation cases in a year. Usually there is just one team with one lacroscopic surgeon to carry out this work. The target is divided amongst the different health centres, who then proceed to outdo each other in conducting medical camps, not taking into account that there is usually just one surgeon to carry out all the procedures.
While trying to manage all the cases, the surgeon hops from one camp to the other, and is forced to cross the 30-case limit. Moreover, the hospitals receive just the period of October to February to hold the camps.
In Bilaspur, just one doctor, Dr RK Gupta, though considered an expert in such cases, conducted a staggering 83 operations with one instrument within five hours.
Barely any patient is aware of the possibility of HIV infection which can be caused by the surgical instruments being used repetitively without being properly desensitized. The antiseptic solution used to ‘sanitise’ the instruments is basically just an eye-wash. Moreover, the instruments spend hardly around 2-3 minutes in the solution, which is not strong enough to kill the HIV, even if it used for an entire day.
Moreover, this camp too violated the government regulations and underscored the need of performing such surgeries in “established healthcare facilities”. This camp was carried out in an almost abandoned private charitable hospital in Pendri village.
A health-worker informed that just one room was opened at the hospital and all the women were made to lie down on the floor for the surgeries.
The very next day even as several women who got infected from the surgeries performed in this camp were getting admitted to hospitals for proper treatment, in another hospital in Bilaspur, 26 tubectomies were carried out in an hour in another sterilization camp by the government; amounting to one surgery every two minutes.
In rural areas, Community Health Centers (CHC) are the designated hospitals, which have very few beds. Routine patients take up most of these beds and even resort to lying in the spaces between the beds. As such, if any surgical camp is carried out here, there can never be enough beds for the patients.
Due to this issue, in a mass sterilization programme carried out in Malda, West Bengal, in February 2013, around 100 women were dumped unconscious in a nearby field as the hospital could not accommodate more than 30 women.
The hospital could not even provide ambulance services, and as one woman was being taken home on a cycle van after the operation, it collided with a matador, resulting in grave injuries.
In December last year, soon after the fiasco in Bisalpur, an eye camp organised by an NGO in Gurdaspur district in Punjab, under “severe unhygienic condition” caused permanent damage to the eyesight of all the 60 patients.
The health ministry, in an answer to a parliamentary question two years ago, had stated that between 2009 and 2012, the government had paid compensation for 568 sterilisation-caused deaths.
Sterilisation camps are carried out regularly in India to control its booming population, and the government provides cars and electrical goods, along with money, as incentives to women who volunteer to undergo this operation.
Moreover, certain quotas and incentives are also offered to the doctors, which cause them to rush procedures. The medicines in the public health sector are also frequently found to be out of date or of poor quality. Corruption is so widespread in this sector that even basics such as disinfectant are watered down to save money.
Sterilization camps always see young mothers come for the surgery with infants and young children tagging along, who face a high risk of exposure to infection and diseases. Additionally, the children, along with mother-in-laws and other family members who accompany the young women substantially increase the floating population of the camp. As the hospitals get only a limited staff to take care of the entire cleaning processes, including OT hygiene and the toilets, sanitation becomes a big issue with a greater number of people.
Since laproscopy requires patients to be on an empty stomach, most women spend the entire day without food, as they reach early to get a place in the day’s limited number of operations. This results in many of them going into hypotension or low blood pressure.
The undue pressure these camps create on the hospital’s one or two attending doctors is a major reason for the numerous fiascos. India is one of the few countries in the world where pre and post-operative cares, checking blood pressure, and taking pathological tests are all carried out by a doctor instead of a nurse. The hospital doctors are also expected to take care of paperwork and emergency cases among other regular work.
These issues need to be taken care of, especially by the public health service. Medical camps are in dire need of more health care personnel and better sanitation. Work needs to be done to stop the inherent corrupt practices and better funding needs to be provided to the CHCs and such medical camps.
Bisalpur sterilisation camp: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wl_TRo0RXgk
By- Tejas Maheta
Free VPNs tend to get a bad rap (and often for good reasons, which we'll discuss in a second). Still, there are some safe and free VPN services recommended by expats - just click the link for some solid options. Next, scroll on to see how you can put them to good use while you're abroad.
Privacy and Security (to a Certain Degree)
One of the main purposes of a VPN is to encrypt your network traffic – garble it, basically – to keep it safe from:
- ISPs that want to sell your browsing and location data for a profit
- Hackers and script kiddies lurking at every corner public hotspot
- Government surveillance agencies spying on their own citizens
Even free VPNs can do as much, as long as you go with a trustworthy provider such as those linked at the start.
On top of that, VPNs hide your real life location by masking your IP address and assigning a new one based on the server you connect to. Useful in case some cyberstalkers or trolls lure you into clicking on IP-grabbing links or scripts to determine your location. Unfortunately, it's not as effective against GPS tracking (though there are some paid VPNs out there that can spoof GPS).
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Unblock Some Websites While Abroad
While not as versatile as a subscription-based VPN, free VPNs still have some unblocking ability that can be useful to an expat. For instance, you can access your home banking or investment accounts, which in most cases block foreign traffic. Understandably so, since a lot of cyber attacks tend to be linked to international hacker networks.
Using a VPN also allows you to access small news sites from back home, who simply don't find it worth it to comply with GDPR regulations in the EU. Alternatively, you can set your virtual location outside the EU to get around all those annoying cookie consent pop-ups. Funny little side effect, but it can definitely save you some grey hairs while browsing.
Finally, free VPNs can unblock some content such as region-locked music videos, or age-restricted YouTube videos in the EU without having to give up your ID or credit card information to Google. You won't have much luck using free VPNs on content platforms like Netflix, though. Those of you looking to bypass geo-restrictions on streaming sites are better off using a sub-based VPN.
One of the main purposes of a VPN is to encrypt your network traffic.Wikipedia
Bypass Firewalls and Censorship
VPNs sure seem like a master thief's skeleton key, don't they? So many Internet barriers out there, all of them nullified with the help of a single tool. And yes, they can easily get around firewalls as well.
For the most part, you'll be using a VPN to unblock social media and other "distractions" at work or at school. Believe it or not, airport and hotel Wi-Fi can be pretty restrictive too. Thankfully, VPNs make short work of their firewall rules.
And while not as effective as a paid option, free VPNs can also help during Internet blackouts caused by government censorship. Look no further than the recent Hong Kong protests, the frequent social media shutdowns in Turkey, and similar cases worldwide. All of these have one thing in common: free VPN usage shot up immensely as people sought ways to contact their loved ones or post their outrage online.
Why the Negative View of Free VPNs?
You've seen all the great things you can accomplish with a free VPN. So why all the bad press about them? Well, here are some fairly valid concerns that apply to a decent chunk of free providers:
- They sell user data – after all, they need to pay for operational costs somehow. It just so happens that advertisers find your browsing habits highly valuable.
- Several free VPNs based in Hong Kong breached their "no-logs" policies and ended up leaking 1.2 TB of user data online. This isn't an uncommon occurrence, considering the data harvesting practices of most free VPNs.
- They can infect your device with malware that can extract sensitive info or otherwise cause damage. In one major case, user devices were hijacked into a botnet and used in a large scale denial-of-service attack.
Other criticisms are directed at their data caps, slow performance, the small number of overcrowded servers, and the bandwidth throttling. Add to that the fact that they don't unblock region-specific Netflix libraries or other streaming sites, and you can see why people aren't too thrilled about them.
Still, if you're not looking for anything fancy, a free VPN should tide you over until you can fit an actual subscription into your budget. Just stick to the trusty VPNs we've linked to in the beginning.
Disclaimer: (This article is sponsored and include some commercial links)
The Cupertino-based tech giant Apple has started rolling out iOS 12.5.5 to older models of the iPhone and iPad. "This update provides important security updates and is recommended for all users," Apple said in the release notes for iOS 12.5.5.
The update is available for the iPad Air, the iPad mini 2, and iPad mini 3, as well as the 6th gen iPod touch, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus. All of these devices were dropped from support with iOS 13. The iOS 12.5.5 update addresses issues related to maliciously crafted PDFs, web content, and apps.
ALSO READ: The September Event Of Apple Inc.
Apple had previously rolled out iOS 12.5.4 in June with security fixes for WebKit vulnerabilities and other issues. Apple has also started seeded the first betas of iOS 15.1 as well as iPadOS 15.1. After removing SharePlay in iOS 15 beta 2, Apple has re-enabled the feature in the iOS 15.1, iPadOS 15.1, and tvOS 15.1 betas. Apple decided to pull SharePlay from the iOS 15 launch because it was not properly functioning and was still riddled with issues.
It adds features to the Health app like support for storing health-related data for Covid-19 immunisations and test results. With the latest iOS 15.1 Beta, one can now add vaccination cards to the Apple Wallet application. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Apple, iPhone, iPad, iOS, update
The National Basketball Association (NBA) and Lakme Fashion Week, announced a collaboration to celebrate "NBA 75" the leagues landmark 75th Anniversary Season in 2021-22. As part of the collaboration, the NBA and Lakme Fashion Week will offer fashion designers from across India the opportunity to submit designs for an "NBA 75" collection. Select designs will be evaluated by a panel comprised of fashion designers, industry experts and local influencers, with the winning designer announced at the upcoming October edition of Lakme Fashion Week.
The winner will then be mentored by a leading fashion expert and will work alongside the NBA on a capsule collection to commemorate NBA 75. The NBA 75 range, which will include jerseys, t-shirts, headwear, sweatpants, hoodies, jackets and other apparel, will be unveiled at Lakme Fashion Week in March 2022.
"We are excited to collaborate with Lakme Fashion Week and offer Indian designers the chance to express their vision in celebration of NBA 75," said NBA Asia Executive Vice President & Managing Director Scott Levy. "The NBA and its players are synonymous with fashion and culture, and this friendly competition will showcase the talent and passion that Indian designers have for basketball and the NBA during our landmark 75th Anniversary Season." The collection will be available for purchase after the event on the NBAStore.in and at select retail destinations. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: NBA, Lakme, beauty, basketball, Lakme fashion week