Corona virus has spread to more than 158 countries and has taken lives of more than 6600 people worldwide. In India so far 129 cases are reported till now with two deaths in Karnataka and Delhi. Corona virus cases got reported in so far 15 states of India whereas highest soaring in Maharashtra with 37 cases.
The Indian government is isolating suspected people in isolation wards in hospitals. The central government has directed the state government to take up particular measures to treat coronavirus patients.
However, people are reportedly running away from the isolation wards and hence risking the lives of other people.
Several Indians infected positive with coronavirus, or suspected people who got admitted are fleeing away from the hospitals. This situation is creating complications for the authorities as the virus is lethal and contagious. Furthermore, 11 people who returned from Dubai suspected of having coronavirus fled away from a hospital in Navi Mumbai.
Last week a woman of Agra made into headlines when several media outlets falsely reported she fled from quarantine. The woman was indeed suspected of having coronavirus as her husband tested positive for COVID 19. However, she escaped from the hospital as the conditions there were too much shabby and horrible. According to the woman’s brother in law “The sight of the unhygienic condition of the toilets made her retch.” Her brother in law also posted several pics of the unhygienic conditions of the hospital. Moreover, things became much worse when UP police booked the woman’s father-in-law under the Epidemic Act and would likely to get a sentence for up to two years.
Poor conditions of Hospitals in other states as well
Unhygienic hospital wards, broken ceiling, leaking dirty toilets, uncleaned beds, no doctors and reckless staff defines the condition of public hospitals in India right now. A Mumbai resident Ankit Sharma shared pics of the worse conditions of the hospital on twitter when his friend got admitted due to coronavirus.
PLEASE HELP My friend is under observation at Ward 27 Kasturba Hospital Mumbai with 10 other patients. These bad conditions with poor sanitation, reckless staff attitude will not help contain the pandemic@CMOMaharashtra @mybmc #CoronavirusPandemic #COVID19india #Mumbai pic.twitter.com/j3iAPYW2yy
— ankit gupta (@ankuagarwal) March 12, 2020
Another person who returned from Spain got directed to remain under 14-day quarantine at the government hospital in Delhi. The person named “Navya Dua” posted a video on twitter which shows the poor sanitation in the government hospital in the capital of India.
I land at Delhi airport dated 16th March 1:00 am KLM airlines from Spain. I am subject to the 14 day quarantine at a govt facility in Dwarka police training school. Won’t say anything I just give some videos of our *sanitised* accommodation. @PMOIndia @WHO @CISFHQrs pic.twitter.com/vd4AnLBIkW
— Navya Dua (@NavyaDua) March 16, 2020
In India, people trust public hospitals so less that usually prefer private hospitals despite being costly. However, some private hospitals are even denying admitting coronavirus patients stating lack of capability. Three hotels in Delhi are also offering quarantine with high-end facilities with a fixed price now.
Many people coming from abroad who are being quarantined require high-end facilities. Delhi govt has asked 3 hotels near the airport to set aside 182 rooms for this purpose, at a fixed price. https://t.co/PHox1sWCQX
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) March 16, 2020
According to WHO, India’s ranking in Health Expenditure per capita is 141. Moreover, the country ranks 145th among 195 countries in terms of Healthcare access and quality (HAQ) index (2017). Healthcare facilities in India are at a distressing condition which raises the question of the fighting pandemic situation like coronavirus. India spends only 1.28% of the GDP on the pubic health sector. This figure way lower than the proportion of spending by poorest countries in the world.
India at Risk
Former Goldman Sachs chief economist Jim O’Neill stated: “Thank God this didn’t start in somewhere like India because there’s absolutely no way that the quality of Indian governance could move to react in the way that the Chinese have done, that’s the good side of the Chinese model, and I think you could probably say the same about Brazil too.”
The question arises whether with these poor healthcare facilities available to the general public, will India be able to control a pandemic situation like COVID-19? The cases of coronavirus are rising every day, and it can result in an unprecedented disaster. With patients fleeing away from hospitals, the contagious COVID-19 virus can spread quickly among other people.