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Kerala doctors demand strict measures in containment, testing strategies as COVID cases rage on

While the IMA wants the daily testing to be increased beyond one lakh, the Kerala Government Medical Officers' Association is demanding streamlining of the resources to make testing more effective.

Published: 22nd April 2021 01:14 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd April 2021 01:14 PM   |  A+A-

Kerala COVID cases

A healthcare worker conducts COVID test at Tagore Hall in Kozhikode on Wednesday. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Doctors in government and private hospitals demanded the Kerala government to impose strict crowd-controlling measures considering the surge in the number of Covid-19 patients. According to the state chapter of the Indian Medical Association, micro containment and curfew should be imposed for the next two weeks.

“Break the chain campaign should be strictly implemented as the disease could spread from one person to 10 or 15 others, said the state president of IMA, Dr PT Zacharias.

According to him, the rise in the number of patients has already started straining the health infrastructure. While the IMA wants the daily testing to be increased beyond one lakh, the Kerala Government Medical Officers' Association (KGMOA) is demanding streamlining of the resources to make testing more effective. It was critical of the mass testing strategy which was beyond the capacity of the testing centres.

“The augmented RT-PCR testing strategy has proved to be counterproductive. Due to limited resources, some of the test results of mass testing are yet to be released. Besides, it has also affected the routine testing required for patients before treatment,” said Dr T N Suresh general secretary of KGMOA, an independent organisation of doctors working in government hospitals.

The health department conducted 3 lakh testing on April 16 and 17 followed by another 3 lakh testing on April 21 and 22. The results have shown a high test positivity rate of more than 17 per cent and the daily patient numbers have crossed 22,000 on April 21.

According to KGMOA, the testing should be limited to primary contacts and selected target group while strengthening the precautionary measures among people in general. Both organisations demanded transparency in data related to Covid-19 in the state.

Demands of Government doctors organisation

  • Increase capacity of RT-PCR testing capacity
  • Ensure sufficient quantity of antigen testing kits
  • Utilise the services of lab technicians, dental doctors, staff nurses to improve testing capacity
  • Appoint more data entry operators
  • Encourage home treatment
  • Appoint more staff for at least six months in CFLTCs, CSLTCs
  • Utilise all private hospitals for Covid care
  • Improve the number of vaccination with the support of local bodies

Demands of private doctors

  • Impose curfew, micro containment for the next two weeks
  • Increase daily testing to one lakh
  • Ensure adequate vaccine for all
  • Reverse the decision to postpone the exams of medical students as it will worsen the manpower crunch


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