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IMA wants COVID beds to be reserved for doctors

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State healthcare workers, who are the frontlines in the battle against COVID-19 due to shortage of hospital beds and oxygen supply. They do not have any assurance from the government that they will be treated in case they are infected with coronavirus infection.

On 1st May 1, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike appointed a nodal officer to safeguard advocates and their families for getting the medical help if they are tested positive for COVID-19. However, no such order is issued for doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers till now.

Now, the Indian Medical Association (IMA), Karnataka and Bengaluru chapters are planning to write to the State Government and the BBMP, requesting to reserve hospital beds for COVID-positive doctors and other healthcare staff and also appointed a nodal officer to supervise the arrangements.

Dr Srinivasa S, public relations officer for IMA, Bengaluru chapter and who is a chairperson of national IMA Standing Committee for Child Health, said that doctors and the medical staff are at higher risk as they are treating coronavirus patients, but still, they have to search for beds and oxygen supply when they get infected. Existing hospitals and medical healthcare centres can reserve beds. They can reserve almost 50 beds in Bengaluru and 10 beds each in each district.

This matter was discussed in an IMA state working committee meeting. According to the IMA estimates, 60 COVID deaths of doctors were reported across the state in the 1st wave and 5 doctors till now in the 2nd wave.

Dr Anuradha Paramesh, vice-president, IMA, Bengaluru chapter, said that they have lost few doctors to COVID, as they were not able to get any beds in Karnataka and Bengaluru. Three doctors died recently in the state capital, out of whom one doctor was looking for a bed since few days. Most healthcare workers could have survived if beds and oxygen was found on time.

On 28th April, Dr Srinivasa wrote to Kempegowda Institute of Medical Sciences Hospital and Sagar Group of Hospitals in Bengaluru, requesting them to reserve beds for doctors.

Source: The New Indian Express

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