With lockdown restrictions getting eased and patients lining up for some common elective surgical procedures such as laparoscopic, joint and kidney stone, gastric, and orthopedic, a Covid-19 test is mandatory to be conducted through an ICMR-accredited laboratory. The patient has to stay in the hospital facility until the report comes in.

Covid-19 test kit at home
Covid-19 test kit at home

What happens if a patient is tested Covid-19 positive before surgery?

If the patient is tested Covid-19 positive, then the patient will be referred to a Covid-19 treatment center. However, if the patient is tested negative then the normal surgery protocols need to be followed.

In the case of asymptomatic cases who have been tested positive for Covid-19, the hospitals on their part are following strict Covid-19 procedures for all patients undergoing surgery and not. More planned surgical procedures will be lined up from mid-June.

(For representational purpose)Courtesy: Reuters

Until now, only emergency surgeries have been performed by the hospital, they will be resuming urgent and normal surgical procedures in the days soon, as lockdown restrictions get uplifted and intra-state movement is possible.

In the current situation, patients from Delhi, Ghaziabad, and Faridabad are not able to reach Noida hospitals for surgical procedures. Many hospitals have put in place strict protocols on when and how to restart surgical procedures.

Patient management in hospitals during Covid-19 times

While critically ill patients are visiting the hospital out of necessity, not all patients are eager in today's times to perform elective surgery procedures, many are rescheduling the same to be performed in a better situation at a later point in time, depending on the condition of the patient. Hospitals have a tough challenge ahead on how to reset or manage the patient capacity threshold, with increasing Covid-19 cases on a day-to-day basis.

COVID-19 is a respiratory disease and not a blood disease.Courtesy: Reuters

Hence, the hospitals are working on handling the backlog of surgical procedure line-up to schedule, and manage the inflow of patients, allocation of beds, in accordance with the safety procedural guidelines to curb and contain the spread of the virus within the treatment facility centers.

The government is working on a plan to resume normal healthcare services including opening up of outpatient departments (OPDs) in green zones, while healthcare facilities in red zones may still take time to open up for patient visits.

The initial focus of hospitals will be on critical healthcare conditions and surgeries such as angioplasty, bypass procedures, and cancer surgeries. Other elective surgeries will be taken up, after reviewing the condition of the patient and if declared a state of emergency.