COVID-19 PANDEMIC: Separate respiratory clinics to prevent community transmission
Srinagar, Mar 21: Stepping up fight
against coronavirus, the authorities have set up separate flu clinics for
patients with a history of upper respiratory tract infections to prevent the
spread of community transmission.
It was observed that patients with a
history of upper respiratory tract infections or any travel may expose people
to other viruses in the Out Patient Departments of the hospital.
Therefore, separate respiratory or flu
clinics were established on Saturday in the hospitals across the valley.
A senior resident at SMHS Hospital said the
purpose of the clinics are to expand the hospitals’ ability to screen patients
rapidly without leading to community transmission.
“The patients with respiratory symptoms or
any travel history will be separated from the other patients, who are also
seeking treatment,” the doctor said.
He noted the patients will be evaluated and
sent for testing through these clinics. “Further, the clinicians will examine
patients under proper respiratory protection gear,” he said.
Another medico at SMHS hospital said the
triaging of patients come under the protocols of the World Health Organization.
“Triaging is the process of determining the
priority of patients’ treatment based on the severity of their condition. That
means if they have reported severe symptoms, the patients will report to the
respiratory clinic rather than coming directly into the OPD,” he said.
Earlier, the doctors were entertaining
every patient in the Out-Patient Departments until the maiden case of COVID-19
was reported in Kashmir. This sent the alarm bells ringing across the
On Friday, the government issued an order
making it mandatory for pneumonia patients to get tested for COVID-19.
Epidemiologist, Integrated Disease
Surveillance Programme, Dr. Manzoor Qadri said the goal is to prevent the virus
from spreading by ensuring that patients seek care in the right settings. “The
clinics have been expanded to all tertiary care, district, and sub-district
hospitals,” Dr. Qadri said.