Delhi: RML, Safdarjung at forefront of coronavirus fight

Astha Saxena
coronavirus patients, Delhi cases, Ram Manohar Lohia, Safdarjung hospital, delhi news, indian express news

Doctors at both hospitals have been given the task of collecting samples of suspected cases and sending them for testing.

As the country battles the coronavirus pandemic, two hospitals — Ram Manohar Lohia and Safdarjung — are at the forefront to collect samples of patients coming with symptoms. From addressing queries of concerned men and women to providing treatment to those who test positive, the Centre-run hospitals have had their hands full.

Till Sunday, as many as 219 passengers from the coronavirus-affected countries were under observation at these two hospitals — 110 at Safdarjung and 109 at RML. On Sunday, six symptomatic passengers were admitted to Safdarjung hospital and two to RML.

Doctors at both hospitals have been given the task of collecting samples of suspected cases and sending them for testing. Testing facilities are currently available at the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), AIIMS and the National Institute of Virology at Pune.

“The only criteria to collect samples is to find out if the person has a travel history or has been in contact with a person who has travelled to other countries. We have to adhere to the case definition provided by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for dealing with cases of Covid-19. Symptoms like cold, cough and fever are not enough to collect the samples of any person,” said a doctor from Safdarjung hospital.

On a daily basis, the samples are being sent to the testing labs and the reports come out in two-three days, depending on the number of samples at the lab centre. If the sample is positive, the patient is called to the hospital.

“Those who test positive are then counselled by doctors. The next course of treatment is discussed to assess whether the patient needs to be admitted to the isolation ward or requires home isolation,” added the doctor.

At RML, over 100 people were visiting the testing center on a daily basis till last week. The number has gone down to 30-35 this week. “The screening facility is available at the hospital round the clock at the dedicated flu corner. A team of doctors is carefully collecting samples and then sending it for testing,” a senior doctor from RML hospital said.

Meanwhile, a 29-year-old of resident of Uttam Nagar who was admitted to Safdarjung hospital has recovered from the virus and has been discharged. With a travel history of Italy and France, he tested positive for Covid-19 on March 4. A tracing of 434 contacts was done by the department of health. The contact tracing of the patient’s office in Gurgaon was also done and a list of 91 employees was received.

He is the second of the seven confirmed cases in Delhi to be discharged. On Saturday, the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Delhi, a 45-year-old male, was discharged from Safdarjung hospital.

Of the seven positive cases, two have been discharged, a 68-year-old woman expired at RML, and four are still undergoing treatment at Safdarjung hospital.

As many as 168 passengers who returned from different countries have been quarantined at the Delhi government’s quarantine facility in the South district. A round-the-clock medical team has been stationed at the facility to monitor the cases. Till date, 1,77,203 passengers from Covid-19 affected countries have been screened at Delhi Airport and placed under surveillance. 3,389 passengers from affected countries were screened on Sunday.