MCA scorer is frontline warrior in fight against COVID-19

Fifty-five year old Deepak Joshi performs x-rays for all suspected COVID-19 patients at the South Mumbai Hospital.

In this picture taken on Saturday, June 20, health workers wearing protective suits conduct door-to-door thermal screening at Tanaji Nagar area to detect COVID-19 positive cases, in Malad, Mumbai. COVID-19 cases have crossed the 60,000 mark in the State of Maharashtra.   -  PTI

He is Mumbai cricket’s long-time ‘Numbers Man’ but 55-year-old scorer Deepak Joshi now has a way bigger assignment than keeping a tally of the fours and sixes hit by batsmen.

Joshi, a medical technologist who stays in Virat, a far-away suburb in the city, is employed with a South Mumbai Hospital for the past 28 years. Currently he is on frontline duty, performing x-rays for all suspected COVID-19 patients.

“On May 24, I travelled in three buses for over three hours and re-joined duty whole-heartedly at the hospital. In my eight-hour daily shift, I handle 15-20 suspected COVID-19 patients and primarily take their chest x-rays,” Joshi told PTI on Monday.

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For nearly a month now, Joshi hasn’t gone home. “I haven’t visited my home since May 24 and have been staying in the accommodation provided by the hospital. I thank the hospital management for the same,” he said.

Encouragement from family

Joshi won’t be able to meet his family for three to six months but that he believes is a small price to pay being a frontline worker in these distressing times. “My wife and daughters are worried about my safety, but still they are encouraging me to continue working .They want me to take all the necessary precautions. Their support means a lot to me,” said Joshi.

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Joshi was proud that Mumbai Cricket Association lauded him for being a frontline warrior. “Also, some of the officials of the Mumbai Cricket Association spoke to me and complimented me for the work I am doing. That also keeps me motivated,” added Joshi, who has been an official scorer in 11 Tests, 21 ODIs and five T20s.

Since he resides in the hospital premises, Joshi says he is available for duty round the clock or whenever the need arises apart from his regular shift hours. “These are times when everyone needs to do their best beyond call of duty. I am always available whenever duty calls,” Joshi said.

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