by Tahir Bhat
SRINAGAR: With every doctor and paramedic supposed to be around the health care facility, a huge population of medical professionals are down with fever, attributed to Covid19.
Insiders in the medical fraternity said that a huge section of their staff is unwell and has contracted the infection. In most of the cases, they had already shared the viral infection with their families before they came to know that they are viral carriers.
“Over 200 doctors & paramedics of GMC Srinagar & Associated Hospitals tested positive for COVID in last 14 days,” Dr Mohammad Salim Khan, who speaks for the GMC and the associated hospitals, put the frightening situation on his Facebook. “Please stop visiting hospitals for non-emergency purposes. Omicron is taking a toll on health care providers. Please don’t burden the system to collapse it.”
Sources in the SKIMS said almost 20 to 25 per cent of the staff is infected and most of them have taken the infection home.
Even in some private hospitals, the major crowd pulling doctors have contracted the infection.
“It is very difficult to trace a doctor now. My aunt had come to see a doctor from Kupwara but I could not locate anybody,” a young man who works in Srinagar said. “Finally, I traced a doctor at home and he suggested a prescription on WhatsApp.”
Doctors said that the cancellation of the vacations did not help. Firstly, one doctor said, all doctors are not required for Covid 19 management. Second, had this section of doctors been away from hospitals, they would have remained a backup to replace if the working staff was infected. “Perhaps we managed the crisis in the second wave better,” one doctor said. “All doctors are on call, any time. Why should they be asked to come to the hospital where they have nothing to do?”
Given the situation, people should avoid visiting hospitals unless it is an emergency. Hospitals must revive the online consultation system so that they can tackle the patient load on phone, even from home.