UP: Home quarantine guideline brings worries for medical staff
Medical teams attending to Covid-19 patients will now go for home quarantine, instead of facility (hotel) quarantine, after 14 days of duty. But the arrangement has brought worries for the medics who believe that this may put their family members at risk of infection.
The state health department had recently issued an order with regard to the new guidelines for quarantine of medical staff.
“Going straight home after 14 days of continuous duty means taking infection, if any, back home,” said Pradip Gangwar, president, KGMU employees’ association.
“Not all medical workers have big houses and separate rooms for themselves (for home quarantine). Many have elderly and children living with them, who are more vulnerable to contracting infection,” said Seema Shukla, president of the Nursing Staff Association at the PGI, said.
On Wednesday, the KGMU had sent its batch of medical staff to hotel quarantine, but the batch working now may have to go home after 14 days of duty.
“The university shall adopt new guidelines in a day or two,” said Dr JD Rawat, member of the quarantine committee and senior faculty at KGMU.
Different associations have approached institute heads and demanded that the hotel/facility quarantine should continue.
“At least seven days of facility quarantine should be allowed, as by then, symptoms, if any, will be clear,” said Amita Srivastava, nursing staff at KGMU who has completed Covid-19 duty and facility quarantine.
At the KGMU, about 80 staff members, including doctors, nurses and paramedical staff, are working in the Covid ward that has asymptomatic patients and also those in serious condition or on ventilator support.
“At the SGPGI, at least 20 staff members are on Covid duty. The strength reduces with less patients and increases with more,” said Shukla.
Similarly, the Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Institute of Medical Sciences has 20 staff on Covid-19 duty at any given time. “Many medics live in a one or two room set. In such a situation, some alternatives will have to be worked out,” said Prof AK Tripathi, director of Lohia institute.
“The PGI administration has been apprised of the issue. It is a problem for all medical institutes in the state and hence needs attention. Otherwise new hotspots might come up,” added Seema Shukla.