Hyderabad, September 5: Expressing concern over Telangana's healthcare workers having the highest Covid-19 positivity rate in the country, Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) Treasurer Gudur Narayana Reddy slammed the State Government for not taking adequate safety precautions.
"Over 2,000 healthcare workers, including doctors, were infected with Covid-19 and at least 14 of them died due to the disease. Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao is directly responsible for these infections and deaths as he did not take measures to protect these frontline warriors against Coronavirus," Narayana Reddy said in a media statement on Saturday.
Narayana Reddy pointed out that the statistics released by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare two days ago has revealed Telangana was on the top in Covid-19 positivity rate with about 18% of total healthcare workers getting infected with the disease. The positive rate is 16% in Maharashtra and 14% in Delhi while both the States have a huge number of cases compared to Telangana. "CM KCR and Health Minister Eatala Rajender need to explain as to why the infection rate was high among healthcare workers in Telangana. The feedback which we got from the doctors suggests that the authorities did not follow the hospital infection control practices," he said.
The Congress leader alleged that an adequate number of PPE kits was not supplied to the doctors and other medical staff. A limited number of PPE Kits were supplied for the staff working at isolation wards while a majority of staff serving in Covid-19 hospitals managed with ordinary masks and gloves. No mechanism was put in place to check whether all precautions were being taken in donning and doffing of the PPE kits.
Further, Narayana Reddy said that the PPE Kits supplied to the healthcare workers were of poor quality. Doctors have informed us that the PPE kits were almost see-through and lower than 70 gsm, which are much below the prescribed 90 gsm. Similarly, he said that the masks supplied to the healthcare workers in Telangana were also of sub-standard quality and did not meet the N95 masks of Venus and 3M. "A high level enquiry must be ordered immediately on the procurement and supply of PPE kits. Those responsible for supplying poor quality PPE kits should be booked under Section 302 and 307 on the charges of Murder and Attempt to Murder. We urge the doctors and their families, who were infected with Covid-19, to register criminal complaints in their nearest police stations against the authorities for supplying poor quality PPE kits and masks," he said.