Written by Rahul V Pisharodi
The sudden surge in the number of coronovirus cases in Telangana has resulted in a sudden increase in workload among medical staff including faculty, PG, interns, paramedical and outsourcing staff.
The Directorate of Medical Education (DME) in Telangana on Thursday directed the principals and superintendents of all medical colleges to divide the medical staff into two batches after 24-hour duty and send each to seven days quarantine. About 50 doctors, including post-graduates and interns, had tested positive for Kovid-19 in the state in the last few days.
The latest direction applies to all medical colleges, teaching and specialized hospitals which fall under the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation limits.
With a sudden surge in the number of coronovirus cases in Telangana, there has been heavy work in the medical staff including faculty, PG, intern, paramedical and outsourcing staff.
As of 3 June, the total number of cases in Telangana was 3,020, of which 1,365 are currently active and under treatment. Ninety-nine patients in the state have fallen prey to this disease.
On Thursday, the number of doctors tested positive for coronovirus at Osmania Medical College reached 15.. They are in the age group of 21–30 years and include nine female physicians. Only four of them are symptomatic. At the Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS), the number of doctors tested positive for the virus has reached nine. The patients include a faculty member of the cardiology department. Three technicians have also been tested positive at NIMS.
DME issued instructions.
As per the instructions of the DME, the institutional heads are instructed to strictly prepare the list of batches and ensure that all are on duty. No leaves are allowed during the period.
If a staff member develops symptoms, it should be isolated and tested immediately. If found positive for Kovid-19, they should be sent for treatment and a replacement should arrive from the quarantine pool of employees, the circular reads. In addition, it directs the institution head to provide adequate PPE kits and masks and assign one of the senior RMOs to closely monitor the same. The circular states that there should be no scope for complaints of non-receipt of PPE kits and masks.
Speaking to Indianexpress.com, Principal of Osmania Medical College, Dr. Sasikala Reddy confirmed that the young doctors are under considerable stress and therefore, the new instructions from DME were a necessity. When asked about the workload on PG, he said, “That’s why a new change has come.” We are cutting OP cases and have decided to look into emergency cases only. Wear PPE all the time and work in two batches so that some of them get a break from work. ”
Asked if there is any apprehension among the young doctors due to increasing cases, Dr. Reddy said, “It is difficult. Some PGs have refused to work at the OP for two weeks. They wanted quarantine. We will be posting other PGs there from tomorrow. ”
The doctors who have tested positive, Drs. Reddy said, “All of them have contracted the virus in various hospitals where they were stationed.” Four or five of them are under treatment and other asymptomatic patients are sent home. Five hostels have been closed and all of them have been shifted to one hostel for boys and one for girls. The tested negatives will now work in batches. ”
Members of the Telangana Junior Doctors Association (TJUDA) met with state health minister Etala Rajendra on Thursday. He requested for rotational shifts with a quarantine facility and frequent testing of his specimens for the disease.
Expressing satisfaction over the fresh instructions of the DME, TJUDA President Dr. Yes. Srinivas said that they also want to know if the final year examination for PG doctors, which is scheduled to start from June 20, will be postponed.
He also claimed that 48 doctors have tested positive so far in Telangana. “12 tested positive at NIMS, 4 at Gandhi General Hospital, and 32 at Osmania Medical College and 10 of its affiliated hospitals,” he told.