Shocker in Shatabdi: Tested staff asked to work till results come

Updated: 03 April, 2020 08:16 IST | Samiullah Khan | Mumbai

Docs allege mismanagement as only 68 of them and other staff have been isolated, 70 others are still in contact with patients, putting lives at risk

Five staff members have been quarantined at the hospital. File pic
Five staff members have been quarantined at the hospital. File pic

At least 148 staff members of the Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Municipal General Hospital in Kandivli West, also known as Shatabdi hospital, are being tested for Coronavirus while 68 employees, including doctors, nurses, paramedical and housekeeping staff, have been isolated after it was revealed that the 65-year-old man from Malwani who died of the disease was admitted to the hospital's general ward.

At least 10 doctors from the hospital have been asked to quarantine themselves in staff quarters situated within the hospital premises. While the rest 70 employees have been asked to continue working. The 65-year-old man was admitted to Shatabdi's general ward between March 26 and 28. He died in a private hospital on March 31.

Shatabdi hospital's Medical Superintendent (MS) Dr Parmod Nagarkar said, "We have taken the swabs of around 148 hospital staff and sent them to concerned authorities for testing. Sixty-three staff members are in the isolation centre at ESIS Hospital, while five are in Shatabdi's isolation ward. Their reports are awaited. It is true that there is a shortage of staff, but we have been able to run all services smoothly."

However, doctors working at Shatabdi painted a different picture. "The MS's claim is not true. If they are really concerned, they should isolate all hospital staff. The patients in the general ward between March 26 and 28 and their relatives should be identified and tested. Not doing so would be playing with the lives of those who come to the hospital. The chief minister or the health minister should review the hospital's situation themselves," said a doctor working at Shatabdi.

"Samples of those who were working in that ward have been taken but how can the hospital management forget that they mingled with the rest of the staff and even shared meals all this while," said another doctor. "The management is also forgetting that doctors share their quarters with others. How will they self isolate in such circumstances?" the doctor added. Another doctor said that staff members in the general ward are not given PPE units and N95 masks.

The 65-year-old patient was admitted for a kidney disorder and was referred by Shatabdi to BYL Nair Hospital for dialysis. His relatives shifted him to a private hospital that tested him for COVID-19.

No. of doctors told to self-isolate in staff quarters

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First Published: 03 April, 2020 07:16 IST

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