With cases from Ahmedabad making up more than half the total number of cases state-wide, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) on Saturday announced a COVID-19 care centre that will be used for treatment of asymptomatic positive patients in the age group of 18 to 60 years.
The AMC has also decided to use patients, who have been discharged, as volunteers at the centre.
On Saturday, six of the 11 discharged from Ahmedabad upon complete recovery, have approached AMC offering to volunteer at the COVID care centre. The oldest among the six who have volunteered is 70 years old.
Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Vijay Nehra said that primarily at this point “they shall be involved with simple assistance such as serving food, water and replenishing basics such as toothpaste whenever a patient requires the same at the centre, subject to sufficient protection gear. A consent form was signed by these recovered patients who have agreed to volunteer”. At a later stage, these volunteers can be potential blood donors for plasma therapy, in case Gujarat chooses to adopt the plasma therapy treatment for the COVID-19 patients.
Ahmedabad district has reported 243 cases until now with 159 cases reported in the past three days. On Saturday, Ahmedabad reported a total of 46 positive patients. In a bid to take the pressure off tertiary healthcare, an earlier institutional quarantine facility in Ahmedabad has now been converted to a ‘COVID care centre’, which will house asymptomatic positive patients aged between 18 and 60 years from now on, said AMC municipal commissioner Vijay Nehra.
“The SOP is such that an asymptomatic positive patient will be taken to SVP Hospital first where their vitals and other parameters will be observed and once approved by medical professionals there, they will be shifted to the COVID care centre, subject to absence of co-morbidities, complications and within the specified age bracket. The centre will have round the clock doctors and paramedics, continuous monitoring of these patients as well as an ambulance permanently stationed there so that they can be shifted in case any complications arise. Until now (since mass testing began from April 7 in AMC area), we have had nearly 50% of those testing positive as asymptomatic. The first batch of shifting is expected today (Saturday itself),” Nehra said.
The age range has been fixed by AMC keeping in mind the low mortality rate in this age group, added Nehra.
The state government on Friday had announced its decision to permit asymptomatic positive patient and if aged more than 85 years to stay at home, subject to an undertaking from the patient’s family. The move, as was explained by the state health department, was to ensure that aged patients don’t deteriorate under mental duress of hospitalisation.
Nehra said the urban local body has not received any details of it yet. A government medical officer, however, told this paper that such cases are highly unlikely with patients of this age often having existing co-morbidities and complications. Until now, Ahmedabad has had two patients aged 85 years and 92 years with the former succumbing to COVID-19 earlier in March.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines