Treat Coronavirus cases or shut down, private hospitals told

Updated: Apr 11, 2020, 07:43 IST | Arita Sarkar | Mumbai

With over 100 cases being reported every day, the BMC needs more hospitals to set up isolation wards and cannot afford to shut hospital premises, said a civic source

Bhatia Hospital awaits result of 150 more staff members
Bhatia Hospital awaits result of 150 more staff members

The BMC has directed private hospitals in the city to set up isolation wards to treat COVID-19 patients as well. Those who won't abide by the directive have to shut down. The civic body issued the instruction after seven hospitals had to be closed temporarily over the past couple of weeks when staffers tested positive.

With over 100 cases being reported every day, the BMC needs more hospitals to set up isolation wards and cannot afford to shut hospital premises, said a civic source. "All private hospitals have been instructed to make arrangements to treat COVID-19 patients, and if they don't, they will have to shut operations," he said.

The source added that from now on, "every patient has to be treated as a suspected COVID-19 case" and hospitals need to provide PPE units to staff. BMC has offered to help with PPE suits if required, he said.

Barring a few, all private hospitals have agreed to cooperate. "The hospitals will have to set up isolation wards for COVID-19 patients with a separate entry and exit. They will also have to train their staff and provide PPE suits to them," said the official. New admissions are being barred because there is a risk of COVID-19 spreading in the hospital from a patient who may be asymptomatic. In all cases, the infection started from a patient being treated for some other ailment.

Virus in Bhatia Hospital

As many as 14 staff members at Bhatia Hospital have tested positive for the virus and were moved to the ICU on Thursday, the hospital said in a statement on Friday. Several staff members were already in quarantine after three patients in the hospital tested COVID-19 positive on Wednesday. About 49 staff members who tested negative have to remain in quarantine; some at home, others at the hospital. Result of 150 others are awaited. The hospital said it discharged some patients on Thursday and the remaining are being shifted to other hospitals. Shushrusha Hospital in Dadar also shut down temporarily on Friday after two nurses tested positive.

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