Tamil Nadu

Eleven doctors from Tamil Nadu lost lives to COVID-19 in second wave, states Indian Medical Association data

According to data in the Indian Medical Association (IMA) COVID-19 Registry, a total of 11 doctors — both in the government and private sectors — have died of COVID-19 in Tamil Nadu during the second wave of the pandemic.

This has reiterated the need to reduce exposure levels, improve testing and treatment for healthcare providers (HCP).

According to the data, a total of 269 doctors had died across the country during the second wave. Of this, 11 died in Tamil Nadu. As per IMA data released in February, 89 doctors from Tamil Nadu had succumbed to the infection till then.

J.A. Jayalal, national president, Indian Medical Association (Headquarters), said many HCPs were getting infected on a daily basis across the country.

“Majority of patients coming to hospitals are infected. This results in increased exposure and high viral load that poses a risk for HCPs. They should be protected. Testing and treatment for HCPs should be a priority,” he said.

There is an urgent need to augment manpower, he said, adding, “The Centre has postponed the conduct of NEET-PG. The only option for increasing the manpower is to conduct NEET-PG as quickly as possible so that nearly 45,000 doctors can join various institutions. The Tamil Nadu government should take this up with the Centre,” he said.

G.R. Ravindranath, general secretary of the Doctors’ Association for Social Equality, said each government hospital should earmark a separate facility to treat its doctors and staff nurses, who test positive for COVID-19. Compensation for families of doctors who have succumbed to COVID-19 should be increased to ₹50 lakh.

“One of the family members should be given a government job,” he said.

He said those who had tested negative in RT-PCR in COVID-19-suspected and -related deaths should also be compensated.

“RT-PCR test positivity alone should not be taken as the condition for COVID-19 deaths as in many cases the reports have returned negative,” he said.

Dr. Ravindranath called for an audit of deaths of doctors and nurses in the State.

A government doctor said financial assistance was yet to reach families of many who died in the first wave. “We have been repeatedly seeking compensation for Dr. Jayamohan, a doctor attached to a primary health centre in the Nilgiris, who died while on COVID-19 duty. There are no signs of any help till now,” he said.

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Printable version | Jun 24, 2021 6:48:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/eleven-doctors-from-tamil-nadu-lost-lives-to-covid-19-in-second-wave-states-indian-medical-association-data/article34590949.ece

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