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Delhi can use final year MBBS students, retired doctors, suggests NHRC

IANS Jun 30, 2020

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), in its report submitted to the Delhi government after its visit to Lok Nayak Jai Prakash (LNJP) Hospital, suggested that services of final year MBBS students can be availed if there is shortage of hands.

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"For augmenting manpower, services of final year MBBS students can also be availed appropriately. The retired medical and paramedical staff in sound health can also be roped in," the apex human rights body said in its report.

It has also advised that COVID Care Centres shall be created for those COVID positive patients who live in slums or rehabilitation colonies including those who don't have independent toilet and room for the quarantine. It said that the hospitals should refer such COVID patients, who don't require hospitalisation, to these COVID Care Centres. "However those who have facility of quarantine at home and don't require hospitalisation, should quarantine at their respective homes."

The NHRC also advised the Delhi government that psychological counselling should be provided to the medical and paramedical staff on duty. With regard to the food being provided to the patients, it has suggested that the quality should be monitored by a dietician and the patients should be allowed to be in touch with their family members through their mobile. It has also advised that the death of a patient should be intimated to the relatives at the earliest and the dead bodies shall be removed from the wards as per the standard practice without any delay. "All possible assistance be given to the aggrieved families for the last rituals in a dignified & safe manner," the NHRC said.

The hospitals have been advised to establish a help desk with important phone numbers displayed at the initial point of contact with the patient. Also a window should be opened with a two-way communication with a mic and speaker so that patients are provided proper directions. In view of the claims of a shortage of ambulances, the panel has asked the Delhi government to put the list of the oxygen-enabled ambulances on the website by NCT Delhi and the charges of the ambulances shall also be monitored.

On June 11, a NHRC panel visited the LNJP Hospital to take stock of its functioning and make a spot inspection of the facilities in wake of allegations that there is mismanagement and COVID patients are being denied admission and treatment. The ANHRC member had said that they had come "to take stock of the situation on the complaints of the patients regarding discrepancies in availability of beds on Delhi corona app and in hospitals".

The five member team, led by the member, also comprised an Assistant Registrar (Law), a DSP, a Inspector and a Doctor on the panel of the Commission. The member had enquired about the viral video of a dead body on the floor at the hospital but authorities said that it was due to malfunctioning of the lift. The Commission had took a suo motu cognizance in the matter after watching the said video.

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