JAMMU: COVID-19 patients in Government Medical College (GMC) and its associated hospitals in Jammu are poised to brave yet another acid test of getting treated by the doctors from non-clinical departments like pharmacology, pathology and preventative medicine. This will be like dentists treating gynecology patients.This decision follows the hue and cry over the fact that no senior doctors are visiting COVID patients in designated hospitals in Jammu. In the wake of this even the corona positive senior medicos including Director Health Services preferred to be admitted in Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Narayana Super Specialty Hospital, Kakryal for their treatment.
In gross violation of advisory issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India regarding rationalisation of medical staff to be utilised for the management of COVID patients, the Principal Government Medical College Jammu has issued orders to non-clinical faculty, teachers to take rounds and to assist clinical faculty in the management of moderately sick patients who many times get very critical and sick while undergoing treatment in level 2 COVID areas. This is to befool poor and resources less patients.During the past two months, GMC Jammu has recorded 128 COVID deaths. Of these 11 deaths have taken place at CD&TB hospital.The Principal’s order has come at a time when GMC Jammu is being criticised by the administrative department that no doctors particularly senior doctors are taking round in the COVID designated areas at all.Mockery of the system is that even after the visit of a high level central team, the Principal GMC Jammu has not preferred clinical specialties but non-clinical specialties for the clinical rounds in both critical and non-critical areas of COVID patient care.In today’s order, Dr Richa Mahajan, Lecturer P&SM, Dr Rajesh Kumar, Assistant Professor, Pharmacology and Dr Abhimanyu Sharma Lecturer Pathology, all from non-clinical side have been ordered to take rounds between 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM as per their roster duty in Chest Diseases (CD) Hospital from September 25 onwards. In CD hospital, serious COVID patients are admitted.Sources say that authorities are even planning to prepare a roster for isolation ward and other critical COVID areas.If experts from public health are to be believed they say that facilities of any COVID hospital have been categorised based on the characteristics of the patients who will be attended there, and the management decisions which were implemented as per the revised advisory of the Ministry of Health.In brief, the three levels of health facilities will be (a) Level A (level 3): Screening areas; (b) Level B (level 2): Facility for non-critically ill hospitalised patients; (c) Level C (level 1): Facility for critically ill hospitalised patients.GMC Jammu presently has also categorised various areas on the same format. i.e presently Level 1 facility is Isolation Ward with bed capacity of 33 at GMC Jammu, and Upgraded CCU with bed capacity of 16 beds where critically ill patients of COVID requiring Intubation or Ventilator Support and High Flow oxygen are kept for treatment.Similarly, CD and TB Hospital, Ward 3 and Ward 7 of GMC&H have been designated as Level 2 Facility for moderately sick COVID patients. Whereas, screening area and triage area which was previously working at GMC& H has been shifted to Psychiatry Hospital at present is labelled as Level 3.All medically trained (MBBS) residents and faculty from Pre- and Para-Clinical departments including, Anatomy, Physiology, Biochemistry, Biophysics, Pathology, Microbiology, Forensic Medicine, Pharmacology, Lab Medicine, Nuclear Medicine and Radio-diagnosis belonging to Category E designated by Govt. of India are supposed to be only posted in Level C (Level 3) COVID Screening areas.Thus, this step of GMC authority amounts to cheating with the patients who were excepting that steps shall be taken by GMC authorities to ensure senior clinic doctors shall take the round in the COVID critical or non-critical areas, but it is very callous and non-serious approach of the authorities where just to fake the public and to cover up the current public row, another controversial decision has been taken.Sources said this order is against the aspirations of the general public which aspire senior doctors to visit the wards and COVID areas, but this order is betrayal with such patients. It is also against the health advisory issued in direction of rationalisation of staff for COVID management in any hospital issued by government of India and Union Tertiary of J&K. Further, insiders say that while preparing the roster, authorities are preferring pick and choose policy.Recently, there was scuffle between a HoD and a doctor deputed in GMC’s control room over the change of duty of a lady doctor in corona ward on some political influence.
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