Srinagar: Around 60 staffers at Government Super Specialty Hospital (SSH), Srinagar held a silent protest on Monday after the authorities allegedly failed to ensure provide them proper protective gear against COVID-19.

The protest is in the wake of multiple cases of COVID-19 emerging from the hospital even as one young Srinagar resident, whose was attending his ailing father at SSH, died within days of contracting the virus last week while his father too became its victim today.

A total of 15 positive cases have been reported at the hospital so far. Five of them are staffers including three nurses, resident medical officer and a sweeper.

On Monday, 60 staffers including nurses, resident doctors, registrars, security guards, and ECG technicians staged a protest in the hospital premises.

They demanded standard personal protection equipment (PPEs), and accommodation for the front line workers.

“Yesterday, a nurse from the gastroenterology department was tested positive. She resides in the hostel and shares a room with the female staffer from cardiology department. Despite this, no measures are taken to screen her or ensure our safety through standard protective gears,” a staffer at SSH said.

The staffer said a simple surgical gown is provided to them along with masks and gloves.

“On top of it, the cardiology department has been shifted to SMHS Hospital for the last three days. The staffers are same and haven’t been screened. It appears they want to spread the virus to SMHS as well,” the staffer added.

Another nurse said, the hospital administration is putting their life at risk by not proving them with the accommodation.

“I am always fearful that my old parents, who are already immune-compromised will contract the virus from me. Being young, I can fight it out but what about them? It is better if they provide us with the accommodation so that many lives can be saved,” the nurse said.

Medical Superintendent Government Super Specialty Hospital Dr Shabir Dar said they have taken cognizance of the matter.

“Principal Government Medical College Srinagar has taken up the matter with district administration and they will address the grievances soon,” Dr Shabir said.

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About the Author

When the world fails to make sense, Hirra Azmat seeks solace in words. Both worlds, literary and the physical lend color to her journalism.

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