Mumbai News

Is Mumbai ready to tackle deadly novel coronavirus? Doctors raise concern – India Today

A senior specialist doctor in Mumbai has raised concerns over the preparedness of the hospitals in Maharashtra to tackle the highly contagious coronavirus which has infected a total of five people across India as of now.

Two fresh positive cases were reported, out of which one was from Delhi and the other from Telangana.

The senior doctor said that the hospitals have approached the state government many times in the past voicing out the need for separate facilities to tackle infectious diseases like the novel coronavirus but were turned down by the government on the excuse of lack of funds.

“We have approached the state government many times in the past to impress upon the fact that we need separate facilities in hospitals to tackle infectious diseases, but, every time we are given the excuse of funds,” the doctor said.

“Now, when there is a global outbreak of the coronavirus which is highly contagious and about which not much is known, I don’t know to what extent are we ready to tackle the menace,” the senior specialist doctor in Mumbai said on conditions of anonymity.

Is Mumbai ready to tackle the deadly novel coronavirus then?

For the state, this is a challenge. However, the state government has informed, keeping the current global spread of coronavirus in mind, that it is ready with the required room facilities in every district hospital.

However, for now, Kasturba Hospital in Mumbai is the only facility equipped to tackle the suspected patients.

According to sources, the state government is making efforts to set up a testing facility at the civic-run hospital to reduce the burden on the Pune-based National Institute of Virology (NIV).

NIV currently handles the samples from across the country.

As per Maharashtra government, not a single suspected patient has been reported in the entire state, and, on the backdrop of coronavirus, four top doctors in the state have been given training under the Training of Trainers’ program control-room created in Pune.

Isolation wards are in place in all district hospitals screening is also done at the JNPT and other ports.

As a start, the Mumbai International Airport is maintaining high vigil screening of the passengers who are arriving from various countries.

A total of 14 countries are under the radar of Mumbai Airport authorities. The 14 countries are: China, South Korea, Japan, Italy, Iran, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia and Nepal.

All passengers arriving from the above countries have to compulsorily undergo a medical screening. In fact, such is the vigil that, as per the orders, phone numbers and addresses of the arriving passengers are taken on a compulsory basis.

A government of India advisory states, “Those Indians who do not divulge the information may be cautioned of compulsory quarantine and those foreigners who do not provide the information may not be given entry.”

Apart from the airport, strict vigil is being kept at the ports as well. Medical advisory remains the same.

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