In an effort to prevent overcrowding at hospital facilities in view of the coronavirus pandemic, officials from the Karnataka government have announced that hospitals will only be tending to extremely sick individuals and that those with mild illnesses or elective procedures should refrain from visiting hospitals.
“In pursuant to the existing COVID-19 situation, it is hereby informed that only sick and patients requiring emergency care may visit the hospitals for treatment at Medical College Hospitals/District hospitals/Super specialty hospitals and Autonomous Institutions. All other patients with mild illness which requires outpatient care/ follow up care/ elective cases including dental patients should not visit the hospitals for the next two weeks or till further orders to prevent crowding and the spread of COVID-19. Private hospitals are hereby instructed to take similar steps to prevent crowding and halt the spread of COVID-19,” reads an order signed by Additional Chief Secretary of Health Jawaid Akhtar.
The coronavirus disease has resulted in thousands being infected across the world and over 8200 deaths.
Officials in the state have been on high alert and have been working to contain further spread of the disease.
On Wednesday, state Minister for Medical Education, Dr Sudhakar, announced that all international passengers arriving from outside the country will be placed under home isolation for a period of 15 days. This is a significant change from the earlier policy wherein passengers arriving only from a list of specified countries were being screened at the airport, and subsequently shifted to an isolation facility if they were found to be exhibiting symptoms of the disease.
Individuals will be quarantined in hospitals, hotels and resorts close to the airport.
Officials have been taking strict protocols to curb the spread of the virus.
In addition to the measures above, the Karnataka Dental Council had also urged dental surgeons to not provide services in view of the pandemic.
The Union Health Ministry also made it mandatory for private hospitals to inform authorities of any suspected cases of coronavirus disease – in patients as well as healthcare workers employed there.