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The Indian Medical Association (IMA) on Wednesday, July 15, said that as many as 99 doctors in the country, mostly general practitioners, have succumbed to COVID-19. It has also declared a red alert for medicos and medical administrators, asking them to raise their guard.
As per IMA National COVID registry data, of the total 1,302 doctors infected with COVID-19, 99 have succumbed to the disease. The data revealed that of those who have died, 73 were above the age of 50 years, 19 in the age-group of 35-50 and seven below 35 years, NDTV reported.
"IMA declares RED ALERT to doctors and medical administrators to raise their guard. If COVID-19 mortality has to be decreased, it has to start with doctors and hospitals," the doctors' body said in a statement.
The IMA has advocated the leadership of doctors to adopt best practices, including intense review and updating of all administrative setups in the hospitals, such as infection control protocols. It said in a statement that any gap in providing for the safety of doctors, nurses and staff are required to be plugged.
The IMA said that cleaning and sanitising protocols should be diligently followed, and a feedback system from the doctors, employees and the public must be put in place.
"Analysis of data shows that while senior and young doctors are equally infected with COVID-19, mortality is higher among elders. While this is on expected lines, there is scope for reducing deaths across the age spectrum. Meticulous adherence to norms and discipline inside hospitals will have a salutary effect," the statement said.
"IMA strongly advocates the leadership of doctors in adopting all scientific best practices. Doctors need to take charge of the situation and ensure the safety of themselves, their families, their colleagues and staff," it said.
National President of IMA, Dr Rajan Sharma, said that senior doctors have taken up the responsibility of taking care of their flock.
Secretary-General of IMA Dr RV Asokan said: "Friendly and scientific batch posting needs to be implemented. Working hours should be tempered by concerns of safety. Providing for PPEs, training, physical distancing and sanitisers should be monitored on a daily basis."
"Operation theatres, labour rooms, laboratories and casualties require special care. ICUs and Critical Care units deserve close scrutiny for adherence to best practices and protocols," he said.
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