Telangana

Health staff burdened with doctors, HCWs down with COVID

Several doctors and healthcare officials at government hospitals continue to be away from work as they were detected with COVID-19. While there is no interruption in Out Patient or elective services, the waiting time for patients to avail the facilities got a little longer.

At least 33 senior and junior doctors out of the around 50 at Government General and Chest Hospital, Erragadda, and over 30 out of 100 of them at Government ENT Hospital were diagnosed with COVID. They are under isolation for seven days.

In this current situation where people are getting infected or re-infected despite full vaccination, the doctors are hoping they test positive in turns, so that this does not hit medical services.

But, doctors and healthcare workers, who are not infected, are burdened with both Out-Patient and In-Patient services. “We are falling short of HCWs and time available to attend to patients. We are forced to give priority to patients who need immediate care,” said doctors from the ENT Hospital. The HCWs from Chest Hospital too, said the same.

“The services are not interrupted. But, by the time the isolation period of one doctor is ending, another doctor is testing positive and going into isolation,” said Dr. Mahaboob Khan, superintendent of Chest Hospital.

Since many people with COVID are asymptomatic, doctors have appealed to patients to visit hospitals only if essential or opt for video consultations. “One should be careful not to add health problems in this situation. It is better to avoid COVID rather than being careless about consequences,” said a doctor.

No holiday

Sunday (January 23) was hectic for thousands of ASHA, ANM, and other healthcare workers, with no holiday. They were busy conducting fever surveys to find if anyone has symptoms of COVID and distribute home isolation kits. They are working along with staff from the municipality and Panchayat Raj departments.

“The orders to work on Sunday were received on Saturday evening. The fever survey will go on for four more days, at least. Whether we have to work on January 26 would be known on Tuesday,” said a HCW.

Besides the survey, ANMs have to be available to offer COVID vaccination. Health staff are also involved in tests. The available HCWs are delegated work: to conduct tests, vaccination, and fever survey. “There is a huge dearth of staff. If all vacancies are filled up, services can be better,” said a Health official.


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Printable version | May 23, 2022 7:32:30 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/telangana/health-staff-burdened-with-doctors-hcws-down-with-covid/article38314652.ece