With three ICU nurses and a doctor from the COVID-19 ward apart from two other staffers of the State-run K.C. General Hospital testing positive, the hospital’s six-bed ICU is being shut down for two days for fumigation. Hospital Medical Superintendent B.R. Venkateshaiah told The Hindu on Saturday: “Our other staff members, including nurses, are worried and are refusing to take up COVID-19 duty. We have been motivating them.”

The hospital has six ICU beds and four ventilators apart from 100 beds for COVID-19 patients. “All six patients are being shifted to other facilities today. The ICU will remain closed for not more than two days as there is a high demand for ICU beds in government hospitals. We are overburdened with work and there is so much pressure on the staff. Some staff of them who are aged and have co-morbidities are reluctant to take up COVID-19 duty,” the doctor said.

In fact, the situation is similar in several hospitals, including premier institutions such as Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, and NIMHANS, where several staffers have tested positive. While 26 staffers in Jayadeva have tested positive, 15 from NIMHANS, three from Kidwai, and several in Victoria hospital are under treatment. At Jayadeva, positive cases were being treated in a separate building on the institute premises. “All of them are doing fine now. Fifteen were discharged on Saturday, while 11 more will be discharged on Sunday. We will reopen OPD services from Monday,” said C.N. Manjunath, institute director. Stating that it is natural for the staff to worry and hesitate to work after some of their colleagues test positive, he Dr. Manjunath said it is important to motivate them. “Also, if the premises is closed for fumigation, it will instil confidence in the staff,” he said.

ICU nurse succumbs to infection

The ICU nurse from Santosh Hospital, who was shifted on Friday night to Victoria Hospital as most of Santosh Hospital ICU staff and a few others were infected, leaving no one to attend to her, passed away at Victoria Hospital on Saturday morning.

“She had several co-morbidities including uncontrolled diabetes, hypertension and cardiac issues. She was shifted in a critical condition,” said a senior doctor from Victoria Hospital.

Santosh Hospital director Santosh Saklecha condoled her death and said it was a big loss to the hospital.

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