All previous COVID-19 hospitals designated as ‘dedicated COVID hospitals’

SKIMS halts OPD services

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, Jan 14: The administration in Kashmir today announced the start of 3rd wave of COVID-19 in Kashmir and ordered establishment of Triage Centres besides designating all those hospitals as “dedicated Covid Hospitals which were earmarked for such purpose previously.
As per minutes of meeting regarding implementation of mitigation measures for the control of “3rd wave,” Divisional Commissioner Kashmir P K Pole stressed upon the application of fundamental Principles of Patient Care Management of asymptomatic Covid Positive patients in Home Isolation and in hospitals.
“(Divisional Commissioner) informed that so far the nature of the 3rd Wave of Covid-19 has been very mild and the cases require symptom based treatment which can be given to them at primary Health Centres,” read the minutes of meeting.
“As such it is imperative that such primary health centres including Panchayat COVID Care Centres be strengthened with men and machinery,” the Divisional Commissioner said and ordered action in this regard by the Chief Medical Officers.
The Divisional Commissioner, also directed for establishment of Triage Centres-two in each district- one at district Hospital and other at Sub-District Hospital. “All the necessary staff/logistics shall be put in place in these Triage Centres,” he said, adding, “All positive cases in the district shall attend the Triage Centre on getting a positive COVID- 19 test report and their further destination shall be decided by the Medical Team at the Triage Centre.” In this regard, action has been ordered to be taken by all Deputy Commissioners and Chief Medical Officers.
He also directed designating all those Hospitals as “Dedicated Covid Hospitals” which were earmarked for such purpose during 2nd wave. “Director SKIMS, Principal GMC Sgr/Ant/Bmr/SKIMS- MCH Bernina have been asked to issue orders,” the minutes of meeting read further.
He also directed designation of Special Beds and Wards for COVID-19 positive pregnant ladies.
“In order to prevent overwhelming of health care facilities due to upsurge in COVID-19 cases, the Divisional Commissioner Kashmir directed that OPD and Elective Surgeries be put on hold.”
He said that in view of huge surge in cases, more manpower may be required to deal with any eventuality. “In this connection the Divisional Commissioner Kashmir instructed for roping in manpower from other departments,” it read, adding, “The Health Teams constituted for monitoring of home isolation cases be also supplemented with additional manpower roped in from other departments.”
In order to review the status of COVID-19, the minutes of meeting stated that the Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir shall hold weekly review meetings on every Tuesday with Districts and the Deputy Commissioners shall hold review meetings of their districts on every Monday.
“Besides, every hospital shall conduct a 10 to 15 minutes meeting on every alternate day to access the implementation of CAB in their Hospitals and infection control measures.
The Divisional Commissioner Kashmir also directed all the Deputy Commissioners to activate the District Control/war Rooms for covid-19 in their respective districts.
He directed constituting District Monitoring/ Supervisory teams who shall monitor and supervise the Home Isolation Surveillance and delivery of Covid-19 kits. “They shall submit report to this office on weekly basis as per the format to be shared By DCCRK.”
The Divisional Commissioner also stressed for testing of all symptomatic cases for Covid-19.
The Divisional Commissioner also instructed the Director SKIMS, Principal GMC Srinagar and Principal MCH- Bemina Srinagar to depute final year MBBS students and final year Nursing/Paramedic students to Deputy Commissioner Srinagar for further deployment as per requirement.
In the meantime, SKIMS Advisory Committee which met today decided to immediately halt the OPD services and directed for the start of teleconsultations of the patients as the COVID-19 cases witness a surge even as SKIMS, MC&H, Bemina has also been declared as COVID dedicated hospital.
In this regard, Director SKIMS, Prof. Parvaiz A. Koul took an urgent virtual meeting today with the members of the Advisory Committee where it was decided that there will be full compliance to government orders with regard to the closure of OPD’s and Elective Surgeries.
However, the meeting said, SKIMS will continue with Tele-Consultations and emergency surgeries which will be prioritized by concerned consultants.
“Those patients who are in need of OPD Consultation after Tele-Consultation will be provided with the services and managed accordingly. However, there would be strict adherence to the COVID guidelines,” read a communication issued by the SKIMS in this regard.
The Director SKIMS during the meeting instructed that the critical areas like testing, oxygen supply, masks and other required facilities should be continuously monitored by the concerned officers and all processes with regard to purchasing of any supplies like testing kits, masks etc should be expedited and purchased on war-footing basis.
He further instructed Medical Superintendent, SKIMS to closely monitor the critical service areas and ensure uninterrupted services to the patients and directed all HoD’s to make rational use of human resources to limit the exposure of healthcare workers.
It was also decided considering the transmissibility of the new “Omicron variant” there is an immediate need for a Triage Center in the emergency area to segregate the patients and contain the further spread of the infection.
Medical Superintendent, SKIMS with HoD, Emergency Medicine, SKIMS have been directed to coordinate in this connection and have it operational immediately.
Meanwhile, the MS SKIMS, in an order issued here said that SKIMS OPD teleconsultation facilities have been made available for patients through landline numbers circulated in media and as per the roster copy attached from Monday to Saturday, 10 am to 4 PM.
“The doctors will be providing consultation on the phone and are free to call any patient for physical examination,” the order said.
The space that will remain open include registration of selected Patient, cash counter, sample registration counter, sample collection counter, drug counter, dressing facilities Injection room, Minor OT, X-Ray facilities, Ultrasound facilities, FIMIC facilities and laboratory investigation facilities.
The MS said that any consultation in OPD without a prior appointment through teleconsultation has been put on hold for the time being.
“Further it has also been decided that non-essential elective surgeries have been put on hold till further orders. Only Emergency, Semi Emergency and Cancer Surgeries or any surgery deemed essential by the treating teams are allowed. Routine admissions may be avoided as far as possible,” the order stated.
In the meantime, authorities at SKIMS, Bemina today designated the hospital as a dedicated COVID Hospital, shutting the normal activities.
“Pursuant to the directions issued by the Government (Ref: Divisional Commissioner. Kashmir under endorsement No: DDRK/COVID/2021-22/8554-8600 doled: 13.01.2022), the SKIMS Medical College, Hospital, Bernina has been designated as a dedicated COVID Hospital. Accordingly, all the OPD services/ Elective surgeries in this Hospital are hereby being temporary put on hold in the larger public Interest till further orders,” read an order issued here.

GMC-J, AHs suspend elective surgeries
Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, Jan 14: In the wake of spike in COVID-19 positive cases, Government Medical College (GMC) Jammu and its Associated Hospitals have suspended elective and routine surgeries.
In an order GMC Jammu Principal & Dean, Dr. Shashi Sudhan Sharma stated that in view of the existing COVID-19 situation, all the elective/routine surgeries in GMC and its Associated Hospitals shall remain suspended from January 17 till further orders.
It further stated that the resources including human resources are desired to be diverted for management of patients in COVID care areas as notification of Additional COVID care areas is in process (in a phased manner as per the past practice).
The order, however, stated that emergency and cancer surgeries shall continue as per routine.