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'Don't refer patients waiting for test report without treatment'

KOLKATA: On finding that the need of emergency admissions are arising for Covid suspected patients awaiting test reports, the state government has directed authorities of all Covid hospitals not to refer such patients without stabilising their health condition.

It has also been stated that deviation in this connection will be viewed seriously. In such cases, they have to be admitted in dedicated Severe Acute Respiratory Infection (SARI) wards to initiate necessary treatment so that the condition of the patient does not further deteriorate.

Arrangement of bed also has to be ensured in any other hospital, in case he or she is referred, only after "stabilising their health condition".

If the report comes positive, then the person will be shifted to a Covid ward. The step has been taken after it came to the notice, following field inspection, and certain reports that patients were not being allegedly admitted till the test report came in.

According to the experts, this was the most crucial decision that the state government had to take when the number of Covid cases is increasing abruptly and it is taking at least 48 hours for the RT-PCR report to come after the swab sample of a patient is collected.

"A patient cannot be kept in waiting for necessary treatment, especially when his or her condition is serious, till the test report arrives confirming whether the person is Covid positive or not. Such patients can be of any age. But, usually elderly people and those with comorbidity need immediate admission so that treatment can be started without losing a single minute," said a state government official.

In such cases Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) should be conducted to detect the patient's Covid status.

But "no patient can be referred without stabilising and arranging beds in any other hospitals, if referred." Issuing a circular in this regard, the state government has stated that "it is being observed that the need of emergency admission is arising in case of Covid suspected patients awaiting a report or with a negative test report for Covid."

"This is to reiterate that under such circumstances, all treating hospitals will admit such patients in dedicated SARI beds for necessary management. RAT should be done for detection of Covid infection status. No patient can be referred without stabilising and arranging beds in the hospital referred to...any deviation (in this regard) will be viewed seriously," the circular read. Sources said the circular was set to all Covid hospitals. This comes when the number of Covid cases in the state was 17,403 and 89 people died on Thursday. "The step will also help to bring down the fatality rate due to Covid as well," the official stated.

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