MADURAI: The death of an eight-month pregnant medical officer due to COVID-19 on Saturday evening has sent shockwaves among the frontline workers of the district.
Dr P Shanmugapriya, the medical officer of Anuppanadi Primary Health Centre, reportedly suffered from fever and sore throat on April 28. However, RT-PCR tests showed her negative for COVID-19. On April 30, she applied for maternity leave which was sanctioned by city health officer P Kumaragurubaran. The following day, she got herself admitted to a private hospital where she was tested positive.
after a couple of days, she developed distress and was referred to Government Rajaji Hospital's obstetrics and gynaecology ward for further treatment. On Saturday morning, she suffered a intrauterine death (fatal death in the utero). Around 5.30 PM, she also succumbed.
The incident has come as a shock to many of her colleagues. Speaking to The New Indian Express, a doctor on the condition of anonymity said, "As doctors, we cannot afford to stat at home to keep ourselves safe. But we cannot afford to lose any more of our frontline workers due to the carelessness of others."
Having stood strong in the front-line war against the pandemic, Shanmugapriya earlier worked as the medical officer of Chinnamanur Government Hospital in Theni district. She was an alumni of Madurai Medical College (2006 batch). One of her family members also tested positive for Covid-19.
Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin condoled Shanmugapriya's condoled her demise. He said in a statement, "The demise of Dr P Shanmugapriya, a young doctor who was a frontline warrior against the pandemic, brings great pain. I have further instructed to ensure the safety of the doctors and other frontline workers involved in prevention and treatment of Covid-19 patients. My heartfelt condolences to the family of Dr Shanmugapriya and the other government doctors in Tamil Nadu.