Over a week after a 46-year-old nursing officer at a private hospital succumbed to Covid-19-related complications, at least eight more nursing officers have tested positive for the virus as of May 29.
Nursing officer Ambika P K used to work at West Delhi’s Kalra Hospital and died at Safdarjung Hospital on May 24. Of her eight colleagues who have tested positive, three are admitted at Kalra Hospital itself.
Dr R N Kalra, who owns the private hospital, however, said, “Three nurses tested positive and are admitted at our hospital. They are doing fine. We got staff tested but those reports are controversial, so we will test them again.”
Of the eight nursing officers The Indian Express spoke to, one said that she was “asymptomatic and under home quarantine”. Another, also under home quarantine, said that she is asymptomatic.
“The hospital made us reuse PPEs, and one nurse died. It’s no surprise that many of us tested positive,” she alleged.
Another nursing officer under home-quarantine complained of “cold and bad throat”. Of the three admitted at the hospital, one complained of breathing difficulties.
At least 40-plus staffers of Kalra Hospital were tested on Thursday for the virus, said a senior nursing officer.
On May 26, The Indian Express reported that several nursing officers at Kalra Hospital had alleged that they were made to reuse PPE. Dr R N Kalra has denied the allegations.
Regarding positive cases at the hospital now, he said, “They can’t be blamed on the hospital and I do not know who all the staff interacted with outside of work or where they live. They might have caught it outside. We have set aside a percentage of beds at the hospital for Covid-19 patients as per government orders, and that’s where the three nurses who have tested positive are being treated.”
Meanwhile, Ambika PK’s 15-year-old daughter too has tested positive for Covid-19.
Ambika’s son Akhil (22) said, “My sister is under home quarantine alone, she has tested positive, and is asymptomatic. I haven’t yet told her that our mother has passed away.”
Akhil, who flew down from Kerala a day after receiving news of his mother’s death, is currently staying at an aunt’s house.
“I live three blocks away, and visit her at least five times a day with meals. She comes till the grill and I stand at a distance and we talk. Our father, who lives abroad, can only come mid-June,” he told The Indian Express.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines