The Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and city police have faced a number of cases in which people suspected to have COVID-19, or close contacts of coronavirus patients, have escaped from quarantine centres.
“Some residents of slum areas, which have seen high number of cases, don’t want to stay in institutional quarantine,” said a civic officer.
With slum areas in the city turning out to be among the worst-hit, the civic body has intensified its efforts to detect COVID-19 cases in these areas.
“… Some local residents try to hide their symptoms during the door-to-door survey… screening by the survey team and mobile clinics has helped identify many suspected cases. The PMC has started picking up the suspected patients with police help and putting them in institutional quarantine,” said the civic official. But, he added, some of the suspected patients have now escaped from quarantine centres.
“Each one of those in institutional quarantine have been given separate rooms but they continue to complain… and make various demands,” said the in-charge of a quarantine centre.
After they complained about poor hygiene and demanded toiletries like toothpaste, toothbrush and hair oil, Additional Municipal Commissioner Shantanu Goel had to issue an order, asking suspected COVID-19 patients to get their own toiletries when they come to the institutional quarantine centres.
Pune Divisional Commissioner Deepak Mhaisekar also issued directives that those with suspected COVID-19 in quarantine should carry their own bags with a few pair of clothes, bed sheet and shawl, along with a mobile charger. “Those with smartphones should download the Aarogya Setu app of the Union government,” he said.
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