Srinagar, Mar 16:
Health workers are at grave risk of contracting infection as authorities have
failed to provide personal protection equipment including N95 masks,
eye-shields, gowns, gloves and hand sanitizers in the hospitals.
A senior doctor
at SMHS Hospital said the tertiary care institute is facing a huge shortage of
basic equipment such as hand sanitizers and masks.
“The response of
the administration towards the escalating public health emergency is totally
pathetic. Here, we deal with hundreds of patients every day and make ourselves
vulnerable to all kinds of infections. Despite that, they can’t provide us few
masks and hand sanitizers,” the doctor rued.
medico who works in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU), SMHS said the administration
is doing nothing in the face of an ever increasing health crisis due to the
“As per the
rules, every bed in the ICU should be having a hand sanitizer besides it.
However, there is no such protocol being followed. This is the scenario in ICU.
Imagine the plight of other wards,” he said.
What is more
baffling is that the whole situation is unfolding when 3-4, positive cases of
HIN1 are admitted in the isolation ward of the SMHS hospital, as per sources.
On the other
side, all the district and sub-district hospitals of the valley barring
Anantnag district hospital are working without masks and hand sanitizers.
“The doctors are
attending to patients without any safety gear despite knowing the highly
contagious nature of the virus” said an official of the Government Medical
Dr. Samia Rashid,
Principal of Government Medical College, Srinagar said they have written to the
authorities and the matter related to masks and hand sanitizers will be
resolved soon. “Moreover, we have recently procured around 2, 500 masks,” she
however, hastened to add that not everyone is supposed to wear masks. “Only the
infected persons and those in contact with them should be wearing masks.
Further, hand sanitizers are not the only solution. The medicos should wash their hands
frequently with soap,” she said.
Services Kashmir Dr. Sameer Mattoo said there is sufficient availability of
personal protection gear in health services. “We are fully prepared to deal
with coronavirus,” Dr. Mattoo said.