New Delhi, April 20: Legendary sprinter Milkha Singh's daughter and ace golfer Jeev Milkha Singh's elder sister has been running a "marathon" in New York -- not on a track but at a hospital, battling the COVID-19 pandemic that has ravaged the world.
Mona Milkha Singh is a doctor at the Metropolitan Hospital Center in New York, attending to emergency patients of coronavirus, which has so far claimed more than 40,000 lives in the US alone while causing over 1.5 lakh deaths worldwide.
"She is basically an ER (Emergency Room) doctor in Metropolitan Hospital Center in New York city. So, when someone comes with the coronavirus symptoms, she has to treat them," Jeev, a four-time European Tour champion, told PTI.
"She checks the patients, stabilises them, performs intubation (insertion of artificial ventilation tube into a patient) before they are sent to special wards to quarantine the COVID-19 patients," he added.
The 54-year-old Mona passed out of Patiala Medical College before moving to the USA in the '90s. She has been working there for more than 20 years.
"I am so proud of her. She says it is like running a marathon every day. She has been working five days a week, sometimes day shifts, sometimes night shifts, 12-hour shifts and it is tough but she has to do the job as best as she can."
The 48-year-old from Chandigarh said the job is a stressful one and sometimes he feels scared for her. "I feel worried. When you are treating people, anything can happen, so we talk to her everyday. My mom and dad also keep checking on her.
"We keep asking how she is feeling and if there are any symptoms. I tell her to stay positive and boost her immune system," said Jeev, also a five-time Asian Tour winner.
New York has reported nearly 250,000 confirmed cases and over 18,000 fatalities, forcing the government to extend its lockdown till May 15 to contain the fast-spreading disease. However, the lockdown is also giving rise to a lot of mental health issues among people, who also need equal attention.
"With New York in partial lockdown, she gets a lot of patients who are suffering from depression as they are not used to staying at home," Jeev elaborated. "There are people who come with bullet wounds, people who are having anxiety attacks, youngsters with drug overdose or old people getting heart attacks, basically any kind of emergency, she has to treat them all," he said.
The Chandigarh-based golfer also called for greater respect for the frontline workers, who have been attacked in India while performing their duties. "It is my humble request to every citizen of the world to respect the frontline workers because they are there to help us, whether it is the doctors, police, people who pick up garbage ... we must be respectful, kind and grateful to them and make sure they are taken care of," he said. The dreaded virus has infected over 20 lakh people across the globe.