Revised discharge policy creates confusion

ESS AHMAD. Dated: 7/28/2020 11:45:40 AM

‘Authorities should come clear on new policy’

SRINAGAR, July 27: The revised discharge policy issued by the government on July 16 has not only created confusion among the health officials. Though some officials after the issuance of the revised discharge policy have been discharging the asymptomatic Covid patients only after ten days others are reluctant to implement the same saying the revised policy is confusing.
"Patients with mild symptoms be discharged after ten days of onset of symptoms and no fever for three days with the advice to isolate himself, herself at home and to self-monitor for further period of seven days after tested negative," the revised discharge policy says.
A health official posted in district Anantnag told that there are no clear directions with regard to discharging the Covid patients in the revised policy.
"The order mentions that the patients with no or mild symptoms will be discharged after ten days with the advice to isolate themselves at home but it also mentions that this will be done after testing negative. So, we are confused whether to discharge such patients after taking their second sample only after ten days or wait till their test reports comes negative," the official said.
Another official of the health department said that the top authorities in the order are contradicting themselves in the same lines.
"If we are supposed to discharge the mildly symptomatic cases after ten days only as mentioned in the order then there should have been no mention of 'After being tested negative'. And if we we are supposed to wait till their second sample test negative then we wonder what is new in the revised discharge policy," the official said.
Scores of asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic patients are under quarantine at different quarantine centers in Anantnag from last over two weeks as their reports of the second sample are awaited.
Though the authorities at GMC Anantnag after the government's revised discharge policy have been discharging the asymptomatic patients only after ten days from the isolation centre set up at the facility after the outbreak of pandemic, health department officials posted in the district refuse to implement the same.
"There are clear directions to discharge asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic patients only after ten days and we have been following the government directive. Since the order was issued we have discharged at least twenty such Covid patients," Principal, GMC, Anantnag, Dr ShowkatJeelani told this correspondent.
However, CMO Anantnag, when contacted, said that order nowhere mentions the discharge of patients after ten days.
"We take the second sample of the Covid patients after ten days only which earlier was taken after two weeks. And when their reports come negative we discharge them," CMO said.
Asked about the GMC Anantnag discharging asymptomatic cases only after ten days, CMO said that he has not received any such directions from the top.
"I even today talked to my higher ups about the order but they clearly told me not to discharge any such case without being tested negative. May be there is some clear order in coming days and we will go by that. What GMC is doing I can not talk about that," CMO said.
The refusal of health department officials to implement the revised discharge policy has also created doubts among the asymptomatic Covid patients under quarantine from two weeks at different government facilities.
"I’m under quarantine from last 13 days and have no symptoms at all. I showed them the order with regard to the new discharge policy but they still are refusing to let me go for home isolation. It is now creating doubts in my mind about this quarantine being a money game," a Covid patient said over phone.



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