As coronavirus outbreak gains stronghold in the South Indian state of Telangana, at least 10 senior doctors from government hospitals and 70 nurses from private hospitals have tendered their resignations fearing their safety over poor protective gear.
The resident doctors disappointed with the poor state-of-affairs at the hospital and the impending threat of contracting the infection, have decided to take a temporary sabbatical from their profession until the pandemic subsides. The doctors are from Osmania Medical College(OMC) and Mahatma Gandhi Memorial(MGM) hospital Warangal and other hospitals.
The resignation comes amidst reports of more than 300 medical professional in the state being affected by the virus. The healthcare professionals have cited substandard protective gear and fear of contracting COVID-19 as reasons behind quitting their jobs.
It has been reported that while some doctors assigned from OMC to Chest Hospital never reported for their duty, others served for one or two months before offering their resignation.
An overwhelming number of the doctors and nurses have put down their papers citing safety concerns and crumbling healthcare infrastructure as coronavirus caseloads increase in Telangana. The poor quality of personal protective equipment to the frontline workers in Telangana and consequently a large number of them having contracted the virus has forced many others to take an interim leave from their jobs.
Many doctors and nurses are dejected to for being of no help to the ailing patients. “The problem is not just that there was a threat of infection and we didn’t get proper personal protection equipment (PPE) kits, it seemed like a waste of effort. Even if a patient was dying in front of me, I could do nothing at all,” said one of the senior resident doctor who had resigned from the OMC.
Despite racked with the guilt of having to resign in the midst of a raging coronavirus crisis, the doctors claimed that their presence or absence hardly mattered. “We didn’t have staff, we didn’t have the infrastructure, we didn’t have proper PPE kits or any other provision required. It seemed like a futile effort,” the resident doctor said.
Coronavirus in Telangana
With the pandemic slowly surging across the country, Telangana, has been one of the worst affected states in the southern part of the country. The total number of coronavirus caseloads in Telangana have swelled to 22,300 with the fatalities reaching 288 in the state.
A study by Professor Shamika Ravi has revealed that Telangana is a combination of exponential rise in daily new cases and very poor testing which is as low as 19 confirmed cases per 100 tests. Earlier today we had reported how a female doctor, who contracted coronavirus while treating other patients, had to shell out over Rs 1 lakh for 1-day treatment at a private hospital. In a video that had gone viral, she could be heard stating that the hospital kept her hostage and the nurses misbehaved with her.