The day when Hindu Rao Hospital converted into a dedicated COVID-19 treatment facility, its doctors staged a protest alleging substandard quality of PPE kits provided to them during the COVID duty on June 27.
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Dr Ambimanyu Sardana, president of Residents' Doctors Association of Hindu Rao, told IANS that the quality of the PPE kits are not up to the mark. "The thickness of material used in PPE kits appear to be of 70 or 80 GSM while we require PPE kits whose thickness measure 90 GSM," he said. Besides, the doctors also complained about a range of issues. They complained of the haphazard preparation to convert the hospital into COVID facility and delay in their salaries.
Sardana said the hospital lack even basic facilities such as Air Conditioners, sanitisation and accommodation of the doctors deployed in the COVID duty. "How the doctors are supposed to perform a task in PPE suits without AC in the scorching summer heat? It's a fundamental thing to do. Also, we are not provided for the accommodation facility after duty hours. We work at a high risk while treating COVID-19 patients, going home in such condition would be a great risk for our families. We can't jeopardise their safety," he said.
Apart from it, the doctors and other health care staff alleged that the hospital is not complying with the protocols required for COVID treatment facilities. They feared that it could result into a faster contraction of the COVID-19 infection among the hospital staff. There are many things that the hospital lack. "Every COVID facility is divided into three zones: Red, Orange and Green. Green is the area that is secured and where doctors don't require to don PPE kits. No such area is designated yet, even the hospital converted into full-fledged COVID facility," Sardana said.
Indumati Jaiswal, a senior nursing officer of the hospital, alleged that the donning and doffing areas of the PPEs are not sanitised. She also claimed that the donning area is inside the ward where the patients are treated. "As per the guidelines, the donning of PPEs should happen before entering the ward, and its doffing should be done after the exit from the ward," she said.
Hindu Rao hospital is making headlines for ill-treatment of its health care workers for many days now. A day before, over 700 employees, including nurses, paramedical and Class IV staff of the hospital staged a protest against North Delhi Municipal Corporation for non-payment of salaries since April. Earlier in June, the Delhi High Court took a duo moto cognisance after the doctors of the hospital threatened to resign over as they were denied salaries since February.