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Mumbai stares at medical crisis as nearly 100 frontline workers test positive

THE ASIAN AGE | VRUSHALI PURANDARE
Published : Apr 12, 2020, 9:37 am IST
Updated : Apr 12, 2020, 10:30 am IST

With some hospitals being sealed off, hundreds of beds have fallen into disuse in hotspot city

A medic takes samples for a coronavirus test in the containment zone of Kurla in Mumbai  on April 11, 2020. (PTI)
 A medic takes samples for a coronavirus test in the containment zone of Kurla in Mumbai on April 11, 2020. (PTI)

Mumbai: Covid-19 cases are increasing at an alarming rate among frontline medical staff in Mumbai. On Saturday, another 19 healthcare workers tested positive, taking the count to nearly 100 in Mumbai.

Alarmed by the spread of infection among medical staff, private hospitals have been asked to urgently provide safety kits, personal protective equipment (PPE), additional remuneration and transport.

The civic body has also invited online applications for the recruitment of 114 ward boys to fight the coronavirus.

On Saturday, Maharashtra reported 187 new cases, taking the state's tally to 1,761. The death toll shot up to 127 with 17 new deaths reported on Saturday.

Out of the 17 deaths, 12 were recorded in Mumbai, two in Pune, and one each in Satara, Dhule, and Malegaon.

According to the health department, six of the 17 deceased were above 60 years, eight were between the age group 40-60 and three were less than 40 years old.

Sixteen deceased had high-risk co-morbidities such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and heart disease. 

The civic body sealed off the privately-run Bhatia Hospital since Wednesday after 13 staffers, including 10 nurses, two medicos and a physiotherapist tested positive.

Two nurses tested positive at Dadar’s Shushrusha Hospital which has stopped taking new admissions and has been directed to discharge all patients within 48 hours.

Due to this, at least 800-900 beds are currently not in use in south Mumbai alone. Such instances have led to various inquiries about safety protocols not being followed in the hospitals.

Meanwhile, the medicos of the Saboo Siddique Maternity and General Hospital in Dongri have alleged that despite an 80-year-old co-morbid patient testing positive on Sunday, the management did not sanitise the premises.

When asked, the trustee of Saboo Siddique Hospital Dr Abdur Rauf Sumar, he said, “None of our staff has shown any symptoms and we have informed the BMC, they will be coming tomorrow to conduct tests.”

He further added, “The hospital cannot afford getting tests done in a private lab as that would cost around Rs 2 lakh.”

A medico said, “After a patient in the hospital showed Covid-19 symptoms, he was sent to the Kasturba hospital where he tested positive. Following this, the staff has been put under quarantine for two weeks. Of those quarantined, 32 who had come in contact with the patient are at high risk and 40 are at low risk.” 

Tags: mumbai, coronavirus hotspot, medical workers
Location: India, Maharashtra, Mumbai (Bombay)