Plight of a Covid-Nurse; who died Reusing PPE


The Covid 19 does not differentiate whether the health worker, who is at war  with the  virus,  is  in a government sector or private sector. Whether it is in Europe, USA or Asia,  although conditions of Covid warriors may differ. Their protective armour may differ from place to place, even hospital to hospital. But the enemy virus remains ruthless and attacks, whenever on slight opportunity.  Although there are plethora of rule and regulations dealing with health care workers and  many times health workers themselves do not know or aware about, what to do in a given situation?

But more importantly, among this chaotic situation, whether rules are being followed or not, how administrators or managers are doing can be any one’s guess rather than an  assumption that of  following a uniform  system. The possibility of chaotic and inept  management due to economical or intentional compulsions  may be a real possibility often rather than exception.

Health care workers may be subjected to moral and legal blackmail or pressure to perform their duties in sub-optimal conditions. Such pressures can be tremendous in private sector because of financial complexities.

Is the payment made to doctors and nurses is commensurate to the risk to their life and work they do? Who will pay them and how much in case harm occurs to saviors   themselves,  administrators refrains to discuss.

 

Nurse’s death: Colleagues say had to wear used PPEs

A senior nurse at   the Hospital claimed, “While the doctors were given fresh PPE, the nurses were asked to reuse PPE. If we raised objections, we were told that since this is not a designated Covid-19 hospital, we are at little risk, and can reuse PPE.”

 

A day after a 46-year-old nurse at a private hospital in Delhi succumbed to Covid-19, her colleagues have alleged that the hospital made nurses “reuse personal protective equipment (PPE), including gloves and masks”.

On Sunday afternoon, a nurse at the  Hospital, was admitted and  died at Delhi’s Safdarjung Hospital, where she was admitted on May 21. She is the first nurse to have died of the virus in Delhi.

The Indian Express spoke to 10 nursing staff at the hospital, where she worked as well as nurse’s son, and all of them spoke about PPEs being reused during duty.

A senior nurse at the Hospital claimed, “While the doctors were given fresh PPE, the nurses were asked to reuse PPE. If we raised objections, we were told that since this is not a designated Covid-19 hospital, we are at little risk, and can reuse PPE.”

The Indian Express spoke to the owner of the hospital, who denied the allegations and said that adequate PPE and hand sanitizers were being provided to all employees. “I have not received a single complaint from any staffer. If there is a single discrepancy, I will investigate and take strict action,” he said.

A senior nurse, who said she was close to the nurse, alleged that on her last day at the  Hospital a week ago,  she  got into an argument with the nursing in-charge about “not getting fresh PPE and masks”. Another senior nurse who worked in the ICU with her  confirmed this.

Her friend and colleague claimed that she was working until May 18, when she did a morning shift and refused to do the night shift as she was feeling sick. “At night, she had fever, a bad throat and body ache, so we advised her to rest. On May 19, too, she was sick, and on May 21, she had difficulty breathing, so she was taken to Safdarjung Hospital,” said the nurse.

She died on the afternoon of May 24.

Her son said “My mother’s condition deteriorated so rapidly… I couldn’t understand how to get here sooner. Over a week ago, she mentioned that the hospital was making her reuse PPE and charging money for masks. I got agitated and told her to just stay at home, but she didn’t listen to me. She continued working, and now she is dead.”

 

25 factors for expensive medical treatment

Altruistic professions are not cherished in present era

21 occupational risk to doctor and nurses

Being doctor or nurse- a disadvantage in present era

 

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