Two more Chandigarh residents tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of positive patients to 15 in the city. One of the two is a 31-year-old member of the nursing staff who was in direct contact with the Nayagaon patient who passed away at PGIMER on Tuesday morning. The other is a 40-year-old doctor from Sector 49 in Chandigarh who has been admitted to the Mayo Clinic in Mohali, which is also his place of work.
The 31-year-old nursing staff member was one of the 36 healthcare staff from PGIMER who were exposed to the 65-year-old patient from Nayagaon in the emergency ward of the hospital. She did not wear adequate protective equipment. The nurse has symptoms of cough and fever. The rest of the staff is now quarantined in different locations within the PGIMER campus as well as outside.
Meanwhile, another member of the nursing staff too has developed symptoms and was tested for the disease on Tuesday.
The other positive patient, a 40-year-old doctor from Sector 49 in Chandigarh, is believed to have been in proximity with a patient who carried the viral load for COVID-19. “We are unsure of which patient, but he probably received it from one of his patients in Mohali who was a carrier,” a source from the administration said. A total of five of his close contacts have been traced and home quarantined. Five more of his contacts from the hospital in Mohali have also been traced and quarantined.
As for the five patients that were tested positive in the UT, including the NRI couple from Canada residing in Sector 33 of Chandigarh, there has been no detailed document of their contact list. Sources from the UT Administration state that a total of 26 primary contacts and 48 secondary contacts of all five of those patients have been traced and home quarantined. However, there is no demarcation of which contact has been traced to which particular positive case.
Furthermore, 40 contacts have ben traced to the 64-year-old Nayagaon resident who died on Tuesday. Out of this, 11 are contacts from Chandigarh and 16 are members of PGI staff whose address is not yet ascertained.
Nurses refuse to work in emergency without PPE
PGIMER nurses have refused to come and work in the emergency ward of the hospital. Citing lack of adequate protective gear, including PPE kits and N95 masks, the nursing staff has claimed they will not work there unless they receive proper equipment for their safety. “So many of us were exposed because we had no equipment to treat the Nayagaon patient. We won’t let that happen now,” said a nurse from the emergency ward.
MS of PGIMER quarantined
Dr A K Gupta, Medical Superintendent of PGIMER, was home quarantined on Tuesday. Gupta had a cough and cold and hence it was decided that the senior PGIMER administrative official should be quarantined at home for a period of 14 days.
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