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Saturday, May 30, 2020

Delhi’s Covid cases cross 5,000 mark

Shut since March 18, AIIMS looks at reopening OPD in phased manner, Health Minister Jain makes similar suggestion

Written by Astha Saxena | New Delhi | Published: May 6, 2020 7:01:16 am
Delhi’s Covid cases cross 5,000 mark AIIMS OPDs have been shut since March 18, leaving several patients stranded. (Express)

COVID-19 cases in the capital crossed the 5,000 mark, with 206 fresh cases being recorded on Tuesday. The capital now has 5,104 cases. Zero deaths were reported for the third consecutive day and the total recoveries rose to 1,468, with 37 more people being discharged over the last 24 hours.

With several hospitals in the city re-starting OPD services following protocols announced by the Centre, AIIMS held a meeting on Tuesday to discuss the same. “The plan is to restart services in a phased manner. We are in touch with patients through tele-consultation, and emergency cases are being looked into. Discussions are on but the date hasn’t been finalised yet,” said Dr D K Sharma, medical superintendent of AIIMS.

OPDs have been shut since March 18. According to sources, the administration is planning not to start the burns centre for a while unless they see too many burns cases.

On Tuesday, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain, during a meeting with Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan, also suggested restarting services at AIIMS. He also raised concerns over non- COVID-19 patients being turned away and requested the Union Minister to consider opening some of the hospitals for OPD services or converting Centre-run hospitals into COVID-19 centres. There are three Centre-run hospitals in the city — Safdarjung, RML and Lady Hardinge Medical College.

In Delhi, two government hospitals — Lok Nayak and Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality – and five private hospitals have been designated as COVID-19 centres. “In the last three days, 72 dialysis patients, who are also COVID-19 positive, have been admitted to Lok Nayak Hospital,” said Jain.

Dr J C Passey, medical director of Lok Nayak Hospital, said: “No other hospital is taking responsibility. We have to do most dialysis procedures on alternate days for all patients. We are trying to develop more facilities but it will be difficult in the coming days. The Delhi government may request Centre-run hospitals to share the patient load, especially those in need of dialysis.”

A doctor from the gynaecology department and an intern at Lady Hardinge Medical College have tested positive. Further, some healthcare workers at the MCD-run Swami Dayanand Hospital were quarantined on Tuesday after an anaesthetist tested positive.

Meanwhile, the health department issued SOPs for screening stranded persons moving in or out of Delhi. As per guidelines, a nodal officer will be appointed for each district to continuously track such people. A team comprising a doctor, nurse, nursing orderly and a pharmacist will screen them.

“Those found asymptomatic shall be allowed to move out of Delhi, and those coming in to the city will be sent for home isolation only if they are asymptomatic. Those with mild symptoms will be informed about 15 days of self quarantine. They will be requested to download the Aarogya Setu app,” said a senior official from the department.

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