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Staff shortage leads to hospitals allowing bystanders to Covid patients

Chennai, May 1(BPNS)

Acute shortage of doctors, nurses and paramedics are leading to hospitals allowing by-standers and attenders to sit  by the bed side of patients admitted to Covid wards including Intensive Care Units(ICU’s).

Even at Government hospitals, which are converted into Covid wards, relatives of patients are allowed to sit by the bed side of the patients. These bystanders are being allowed without even wearing PPE kits and not adhering to Covid protocols.

Sukumari who was a bystander at a Government hospital in Chennai to her ailing husband while speaking to BPNS said, “There was a shortage of staff including nurses and doctors and I had to be with my husband as he used to fall down while going to the toilet. Daily I used to go home after attending to my husband and my son used to replace me.”

This is serious violation of Covid protocol and the by-stander of attendant is in effect becoming a carrier of the disease and turns into a super spreader as the by-stander is going back home and even to local shops to purchase materials.

J Radhakrishnan, Health Secretary, Tamil Nadu while speaking to BPNS said ,”Strict warnings are extended to hospitals not to allow anyone to be by-standers of Covid patients. Government is recruiting doctors, nurses and paramedics on a temporary basis to overcome this situation.”

Police have also been given instructions not to allow by-standers to be with the Covid patients.

Epidemiologists are also worried at the possibility of super spread and are of the opinion that every infected person infects more than one person and if this is not contained there can be super spread in the City.

The doctors are however not too happy at the situation of increase in the number of beds with Oxygen facilities but want more doctors, nurses and paramedics.

A senior doctor who does not want to be named and working at a government hospital treating Covid patients while speaking to BPNS said, “There is an acute shortage of nurses. For Oxygen beds there is one nurse to handle eight patients and for four patients in the ICU and most nurses are handling double the patients and it is really taxing.” He adds, “Unless there is a good number of doctors, nurses and paramedics posted in these ICU’s situations will turn grave as the care for patients will naturally decline and it is welcome that the government has announced the posting of more doctors, nurses and paramedics on temporary basis to overcome the situation.”