Covid-19 in Asia: "Act now to save lives"

In April, Protima Singh, services manager with the International Federation of the Red Cross, in Delhi described “heartbreaking” scenes coming out of India. Now, she urges the rest of the world to 'act now' to save lives in south Asia.

Last updated 4 August 2023

May 2021: "We must learn lessons from India

As south Asia faces a shortage of vaccines and a spike in infections, Protima asks the global community to act now to avoid scenes she has witnessed in India.

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Duration of video: 00:56

"Everything changed in one week"

Having worked on the frontline of the Indian second wave, Protima knows the devastation Covid can create in just one week. "Every second counts" she says.

"There is no time. We need to step up as a global community and fight this virus together. I know that what we're doing at the Red Cross is saving lives. I've seen it. Please donate."


April 2021: "The second wave has just hit India like a tsunami."

"We're focusing all our efforts on the most vulnerable people in society. Elderly, single mothers, people with disabilities."

Protima explains how your donations will help those most in need.


Duration of video: 2 mins
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"It's a difficult time for all of us. Facilities are stretched. Hospitals are stretched. Friends and family are testing positive every day and passing away ...

"It is a very difficult time emotionally and mentally. And it will take some time before it gets any better.

"There is enormous pressure on the healthcare system. Hospital beds are full and oxygen is extremely hard to come by. In rural parts of the country, where some 600 million Indians live, healthcare resources are limited.

"We desperately need critical life saving equipment, oxygen supplies, ventilators and antiviral medication. Local authorities are unable to provide what is needed.

We're just living 12 hours at a time right now. And praying for everyone we know.

"From the start of the outbreak, the Indian Red Cross Society was declared an essential service provider by the government of India.

"In India, the Red Cross is a network of more than a thousand branches. Volunteers risk their lives every day, distributing masks and soaps, and helping with the vaccination awareness campaigns and vaccination drives with the local authorities.

"We're focusing our efforts on the most vulnerable people in society: elderly, single mothers, people with disabilities.

"We're also supporting the vaccination drive, providing vaccinations and running vaccine awareness campaigns, and offering Red Cross clinics and medical facilities as vaccination centres.

Supporting people affected by coronavirus in India

"Through its Global Coronavirus Appeal, the British Red Cross is making sure money and support is available to countries and communities devastated by this crisis, through second and third waves, new mutations and the effects of lockdown.

"The way Covid has struck right now, in India and across South Asia, the needs are really large. If you can, please donate to the British Red Cross Global Coronavirus appeal. Thank you.” says Protima.

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