VIJAYAWADA: Nearly 2,000 medical students and government doctors have been infected with Covid-19 in recent days in Andhra Pradesh.
Of the total infected, a majority were medical students attending to patients in both Covid-19 and non-Covid-19 out-patient wards in 11 government medical colleges attached to various hospitals. In Sri Venkateswara Ramnarayan Ruia government general hospital alone, nearly 100 medical students were infected. In RIMS, Kadapa, 50 out of 150 MBBS final year students were infected.
Similar reports are coming in from other government medical colleges in the state where both students and doctors are getting infected.
The health authorities have stopped elective surgeries in Ruia hospital in Tirupati on Thursday while the government medical college attached hospitals in Guntur and Visakhapatnam have also stopped elective surgeries so that only emergency cases like deliveries, surgeries and others having life-threat are being attended.
As the daily caseload of Covid-19 infections is witnessing a rapid surge, the health authorities are likely to stop non-Covid-19 out-patient wards also, so that they can pay more attention to Covid-19 OPs, carry out Covid-19 tests, administer Covid-19 jabs and provide treatment to the infected patients.
Unlike the opting for home isolation and hospital quarantine for 28 days in the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic and 14 days in the second wave, the medical students and the doctors are going for one week’s home isolation or hospital quarantine based on need, recovering well from the infection and resuming work.
AP Junior Doctors’ Association president Dr Jaswanth said, “We have been receiving reports from government medical colleges and hospitals that several students are getting infected with Covid-19 as they are getting exposed to the infected patients while attending to their duties. However, they are showing only mild symptoms, are recovering well and resuming work.”
The junior doctors favour continuation of the Covid1-9 OP wards despite facing the threat of getting infected as if they stop attending to them, the poor patients may be left high and dry.
They maintain that, so far, there is no adverse impact on government medical colleges and hospitals as regards taking care of patients, and caution that if the same trend of coronavirus spread continues, these too might be facing strain.
AP Government Doctors Association convener Dr Jayadheer said, “Several government doctors are getting infected with Covid-19 and fortunately, they are recovering well and resuming work. We have lost 18 government doctors in the first and second waves of the pandemic in the state and we appeal to the state government to provide jobs to their family members as was promised.”