Counseling Series on “Hope in Times of COVID” at KIIT School of Biotechnology

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Considering the importance of remaining safe and positive in the context of the current pandemic situation, a counseling series was initiated by the KIIT Counseling Cell on the theme “Hope in Times of Covid,” covering the teaching and non teaching staff of each School, Unit and their family members. Accordingly, a counseling session was organized for KIIT School of Biotechnology on 12th June 2021.

Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Srinivas Patnaik, Dean KSBT stated that this counseling session was organized to counsel the staff and other members in context of the COVID-19 situation. He informed that in 2020, when adequate capacity of testing was not available, a team of  five Faculty members of School of Biotechnology consisting of Dr. Selvakumar Elangovan, Dr. Sony Reddy, Dr. Gopal Chaudhury, Dr. Subrat Kumar and Dr. Rahul Modak under the guidance of Prof. Mrutanjay Suar, Director General, R&D, KIIT-DU had been examining RT-PCR samples collected by the Govt. Agencies for results of positive/negative.

Dr. Sucheta Priyabadini, Director, Student Counseling introduced the members of the Counselling Committee constituted by the Founder, KIIT & KISS and mentioned that it has been the endeavor of this committee to provide  support to the participants in the perspective of clinical, psychological and social aspects of life in these difficult times. She also made the participants aware of the other committees constituted by the Founder, for facilitating staff and their family members who get affected by COVID-19. In order to address the concerns of the participants on the clinical side, she had invited Dr. Lalita Patnaik, In-Charge, PG Council, KIMS. Other members of the committee, Ms. Sadhana Mishra, Ms. Rajalaxmi Panda, Prof. Kajal Parashar and Ms. Linkan Subuddhi, were also present.

Dr. Priyabadini apprised the participants of the unprecedented welfare/humanitarian measures announced by the Founder of providing financial assistance of Rs. 5 lakhs to the family of the deceased due to Corona and also providing suitable employment to one eligible family member based on their educational qualification, in KIIT, KISS or KIMS. She also apprised the participants about the philanthropic campaign “Ame Achhu,” undertaken by the Founder to reach the people in need, across the state and to address their requirement. She also informed about the facilities provided by KIMS to the staff of KIIT and their family members during this pandemic.

Dr. Lalita provided useful inputs and guidance in dealing with the pandemic. She spoke on the nuances of the second wave of COVID-19 and the measures to be taken to remain safe and healthy. She emphasized the importance of proper nutrition and maintaining appropriate levels of hygiene. Speaking on the need for COVID appropriate behavior, she told in a lighter note – “Don’t’ touch MEN (Mouth, Eye and Nose), instead follow WOMEN (Washing hands, Obey social distancing, Mask wearing, Exercise and Nutrition and avoid unnecessary travelling”.

Dr. Gopal mentioned about the testing of nearly 1500 samples being done everyday at COVID testing centre at KSBT. Prof. Vishakha Raina, Asso. Dean (Academic) KSBT, spoke  about the relevance of  counseling sessions in these times and complemented the efforts of Dr. Priyabadini and the counseling team and also  Dr. Lalita Patnaik for her clinical inputs. Ms. Rajalaxmi Panda shared information relating to provisions contained in the relevant websites of central and state Govt. pertaining to the pandemic.

Ms. Sadhana Mishra volunteered to provide any kind of support that may be required to deal with these difficult times. Ms. Subuddhi stressed on the importance of physical distance, while at the same time making efforts to stay connected with family and friends even on virtual mode. Mr. Prabir Kumar Behura, AAO, KSBT spoke about the positive outcomes of such interactive sessions. Prof. Kajal Parashar, Dy Director, Community Engagement Cell, recommended the engagement of people in whatever productive works they can do during this period and exhorted the participants to refrain from panic buying during weekends as it leads to overcrowding. She concluded the session with a vote of thanks.

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