COVID-19 second wave straining health infrastructure

People waiting for their turn at a free COVID-19 testing facility at in Indira Colony PHC in Sangareddy.   | Photo Credit: MOHD ARIF

The second wave of COVID-19 has been slowly, but surely, slipping out of hands. People are left to fend for themselves in some places, while at few places people are completely careless and paying scant attention to the impending danger. On the other hand, the work pressure on medical staff is increasing beyond limits.

At Kangti and other areas of the district, several cases are reportedly being treated by registered medical practitioners (RMPs), the locally available and affordable healthcare responders in rural areas. “Many in my relatives’ families got positive and they were treated by an RMP. In two cases, he sent the patients to Hyderabad and Bidar. While one patient died at Hyderabad, the patient referred to Bidar survived,” said one Panduranga Rao from Narayankhed. The increasing costs at private hospitals ranging up to more than ₹ 5 lakh are forcing patients to depend on RMPs.

This has come to the notice of the district administration and officials are trying to create awareness among public not to depend on RMPs. Recently, a person infected with coronavirus was admitted to a corporate hospital for treatment and the family members so far spent more than ₹ 13 lakh and he has not yet recovered.

However, the government facilities are heavy in demand, for instance, the case of Indiranagar Urban Health Centre located in the district headquarters. With the limited staff they are both vaccinating people as well as conducting tests. Though they are attending to more patients than their targeted numbers, people are not patient enough to wait in the long queues as there is no shade or drinking water available.

Heavy rush is being witnessed at every vaccination centre with vaccination resuming after a one-day break. People are also coming for coronavirus testing voluntarily and bringing their children as well.

As on Sunday, there were 232 cases in Sangareddy district and all of them are in home isolation and the total number of people in home isolation stands at 1,905. So far, 74 deaths were reported due to COVID-19 in the district and all of them died in the first wave of the pandemic. District Medical and Health Officer Gayatri Devi claimed that no deaths took place in the second wave so far. Though two deaths were reported due to coronavirus in the district, officials are not confirming them.

In case of Medak district, it is reported that 14 deaths took place due to the virus. “In 95 % cases the patients need only basic treatment like drinking hot water and taking paracetamol and vitamin tablets. Patient has to get CT scan to check the level of lung infection, which is a costly affair for many in rural areas, for getting admitted in hospital. The facility is not available even at many government hospitals,” said a doctor on condition of anonymity.

“The number of patients getting admitted has almost doubled. Those who are neglecting initial symptoms are at a huge risk. We have saved a 93-year-old patient who was admitted in time,” said Sridhar of Shree Balaji Medicover Hospitals, adding that once lungs are infected it will impact other organs.

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Printable version | May 10, 2021 11:10:18 AM |

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