Covid-19: Odisha orders 20 lakh masks after High Court orders protection for doctors

Published on Mar 31, 2020 12:25 AM IST

The Odisha State Medical Corporation ordered 20 lakh 3-layered masks within hours of the court order.

Elderly women in Bhubaneswar wearing masks for precaution against coronavirus .(ANI)
Elderly women in Bhubaneswar wearing masks for precaution against coronavirus .(ANI)
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar, | By

The Orissa High Court on Monday directed the state government to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks and Hazmat suits to doctors treating coronavirus patients given their vulnerability to catch the infection.

Taking suo moto cognizance of the situation, acting Chief Justice of the High Court Justice Sanju Panda and Justice Biswanath Rath ordered the state Health Secretary and Directorate of Medical Education and Training (DMET) to appoint adequate number of doctors in both Government and private hospitals and provide them with required personal protective equipment while treating Covid-19 patients.

The court also asked for appointment of adequate number of doctors to tackle the crisis.

The court also instructed the state government to ensure that leaves are granted to doctors only in case of emergency and directed the police department to not intercept coronavirus-infected patients and their relatives while they are commuting.

Within hours of the court order, the Odisha State Medical Corporation ordered 20 lakh 3-layered masks.

The HC order came days after the Odisha Medical Service Association, a body of state government doctors said that that there was an acute shortage of protective kits for doctors and health care service providers at the district level.

In a letter to the Odisha government’s health department OMSA said that there are insufficient number of masks, santitisers and PPE kits. The doctors’ association in VIMSAR medical college in Burla on Monday requested Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to take necessary steps to provide masks and PPEs to doctors.

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