Staff shortage leads to hospitals allowing attendant in Covid ward

Acute shortage of doctors, nurses and paramedics are leading to hospitals allowing by-standers/attendants 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. They are being allowed without even wearing PPE kits and not adhering to Covid protocols.

Sukumari, who was an attendant at a Government hospital in Chennai to her ailing husband, while speaking to IANS 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. Everyday I used to go home after attending to my husband and my son used to replace me.”

This is a serious violation of Covid protocols and the attendants/bystanders in effect are becoming carrier of the virus and turns into a super spreader as he/she is going back home and even to local shops to purchase things.

J. Radhakrishnan, Health Secretary, Tamil Nadu while speaking to IANS, said, “Strict warnings are extended to hospitals not to allow anyone to be attendant 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 attendants to be with the Covid patients.

Epidemiologists are also worried at the possibility of further spreading of the virus and are of the opinion that every infected person infects more than one person and if this is not contained, the virus can spread quickly 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 IANS 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 ICUs, 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.”