The hospital’s admissions and out patient department services were sealed on March 28 after two nurses tested positive that day.
As the count of health workers and doctors testing positive for Covid-19 rose to 29 in Mumbai’s Wockhardt, the hospital has sent 270 swabs of staffers for testing and placed the entire staff under quarantine.
The infection is suspected to have started from four patients who tested positive starting March 17.
The hospital’s admissions and out patient department services were sealed on March 28 after two nurses tested positive that day. In following days, the count rose to 26, with three doctors testing positive in last one week.
A BMC health officer said the hospital was declared a containment zone on March 28 as soon as the two nurses tested positive. “We disinfected the hostel and hospital. The hospital has 350 beds, it is now being used to quarantine staffers. Only the existing patients were not discharged,” the officer said.
With the virus impacting the entire South Mumbai-based private hospital, the state government is mulling an advisory for treatment and handling of suspected patients to protect front line workers from infection. In Chembur, Sai hospital was also sealed on March 31 after a patient tested positive.
The United Nurses Association also wrote to the BMC and chief minister Uddhav Thackeray on March 27 raising concerns. “We were informed by the nurses that when a patient tested positive, those who had come in contact with that person were not immediately quarantined and tested,” said Jibin TC, Maharashtra president for the association.
A 70-year-old heart patient admitted in Wockhardt last week developed Covid-19 symptoms a few days after undergoing angioplasty. He had no foreign travel history or had come in contact with an infected person. “Nurses were directly exposed, so were other ICU patients. Until then, the hospital was only providing masks for nurses in the isolation facility. Those on duty in other wards were told a procurement order has been placed,” said a nurse under hospital quarantine since April 1.