A few critical issues yet to be resolved at Kozhikode MCH

The Government Medical College Hospital in Kozhikode. There are two ICUs for COVID-19 care at the hospital, and only three nurses are allotted for a 15-bed unit at a time.   | Photo Credit: FILE PHOTO

Going by the Health Department data, COVID-19 caseload may be stabilising in Kozhikode district. But some issues at the Government Medical College Hospital (MCH), one of the two government hospitals designated for treatment of infected persons, remain to be solved.

The Government Medical College Hospital, Kalamassery, Ernakulam, was in the news recently after one of the doctors there claimed that some patients might have died due to lack of attention from the nursing staff. Some doctors at the MCH pointed out that the situation here might not be that bad, but inadequate deployment of nursing staff was a cause for concern.

Right now, there are two intensive care unit wards marked exclusively for COVID care. However, only three nurses have been allotted for a 15-bed ward at a time, that is, one nurse for five patients. “Neither the nursing staff nor the hospital authorities can be blamed for this situation. It is a systemic problem. The staff pattern needs to be revised in line with the existing circumstances,” they pointed out.

Also, doctors and nurses from all departments are being allotted COVID-19 duty. At least some of them may not be trained in attending to infected persons or those in need of critical care at the ICU units. This could create issues in certain cases, a doctor said.

Renal patients

Sources pointed out that MCH remained the only government hospital in the district where infected persons were given dialysis facility. Around 100 such patients are at the hospital right now. Recently, IQRAA Hospital too started a unit for the purpose in the private sector. Kidney patients are highly vulnerable to COVID-19, as there is a chance of development of future complications. A section of doctors believes that opening more dialysis units in the district is the need of the hour.

Referral issue

Another issue is the referring of infected persons with other health issues from other private or government hospitals. If people with existing health issues such as stroke, heart disease, or cancer seek treatment at government hospitals in the periphery or private hospitals, they are immediately referred to the MCH if they test positive for SARS-CoV-2.

There are many cases of virus-infected pregnant women who too are referred to the hospital. This happens at the expense of other non-COVID patients who actually require tertiary-level treatment at the MCH, one of the doctors said.

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Printable version | Oct 19, 2021 11:24:58 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kozhikode/a-few-critical-issues-yet-to-be-resolved-at-kozhikode-mch/article32993839.ece

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