A day after Delhi State Cancer Institute (DSCI) restarted its OPD services after being shut for three weeks as 31 staffers and patients had tested positive for coronavirus, a housekeeping supervisor at the hospital tested positive on Wednesday.
Of the 32 cases at the hospital, 27 are staffers, four are patients, and one is a child of a nursing officer. DSCI does not have a COVID-19 ward. Two patients from the hospital had died after contracting the virus.
Dr Pragya Shukla, nodal officer at DSCI, told The Indian Express, “The housekeeping supervisor gave his sample on April 19 and his result came on April 22. He is asymptomatic, and is in a quarantine facility in Mandoli.”
On Thursday, 17 staffers of DSCI who came in contact with the housekeeping supervisor were tested for coronavirus and sent on quarantine. A hospital source said, “The housekeeping supervisor, who is in his30s, gave his sample on April 19 and was asked to go for quarantine, but he still reported for duty on April 20 and set up the OPD, which the hospital restarted on April 21. CCTV footage has been examined and so far 17 people at the hospital have been identified to have come in contact with him.”
Early this month, The Indian Express had reported how the cancer institute had reported the highest number of coronavirus positive cases among healthcare workers, even though it was not a COVID-19 hospital. Several nursing officers and nursing orderlies had alleged “carelessness by authorities” and that “no PPEs or N95 masks were provided to the staffers.”
On Thursday, a DSCI nursing officer on condition of anonymity, said, “I joined work on Thursday and was a bit nervous, especially since Wednesday we found out that a housekeeping supervisor had tested positive. Thankfully, we were all provided PPEs and arrangements have been made at the entrance to divert patients with coronavirus symptoms to another hospital.”
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