While Jammu and Kashmir recorded single-day highest 2456 fresh Corona positive cases in the last eight months, authorities worried over increasing infection among doctors and para-medical staff during the third wave.
Till Friday evening, nearly 300 doctors and para-medical staff have been infected with the virus across Jammu and Kashmir.
Ironically almost all healthcare workers who have tested positive in the past week were double vaccinated.
More than 100 doctors, paramedics, and other medical staff have got infected in Government Medical College and Hospital (GMC&H)-Jammu and its associated hospitals creating a crisis-like situation for administration.
Frontline workers in Government Medical College & Hospital (GMC&H) and its associated hospitals are bearing the maximum burden of the new surge.
200 doctors, para-medical members infected in Valley
As per reports, over 200 doctors and para-medical staff members have been tested Corona positive during the third wave.
A local news agency reported that at least 109 doctors and 98 paramedics of GMC Srinagar and its associated hospitals have contracted the virus since January 1 this year.
Professor and HoD Community Medicine, SPM, GMC Srinagar, Dr. S. Muhammad Salim Khan said that the situation is turning alarming with the number of cases rising exponentially.
Earlier on Monday, the Director Sher-e-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences (SKIMS) Soura, Srinagar Prof. Parvaiz A Koul emphasized upon all healthcare/frontline workers to get the 'precautionary dose' of COVID vaccine. In this regard, a circular has also been issued by SKIMS.
The Director said that it is to ensure that the workforce stays adequately protected for the coming days of an imminent surge of COVID and Omicron threat, which has already hit many states in India.
SKIMS puts on hold non-essential surgeries
Amid the alarming situation, the authorities at SKIMS on Friday put on hold non-essential elective surgeries and also made teleconsultation for patients through landline numbers from Monday to Saturday 10 am to 4 pm.
According to an order, SKIMS OPD teleconsultation facilities have been made available for patients through landline numbers circulated in media and as per the roster copy from Monday to Saturday 10 am to 4 pm.
The order mentioned that the doctors will be providing consultation on phone and are free to call any patient for physical examination.
Jammu emerges as a hotspot of Omicron in J&K
Another worry among authorities is that among 10 cases of Omicron detected in Jammu, were international travelers from the United States while the 10th case was their contact. This has alarmed the authorities as the arrival of international travelers continues in Jammu & Kashmir.
"If cases continue to rise among the doctors and paramedics it will adversely affect the covid mitigation efforts of the government. So far hospital admissions are low but things could turn worse if cases rise till next week", said a senior doctor in GMC-Jammu.
Things are not all rosy in district hospitals in Jammu also as doctors and paramedics remain under constant threat of catching the covid.
"At Government Medical College (GMC-Jammu), the patients even in emergency wards are suffering as health care professionals are working under tremendous pressure as one by one staff is falling prey to the virus", said a paramedic at GMC.