Final-year medical and nursing students to be pressed into Covid duty to tackle second wave
CM-experts meeting focuses on using Bengaluru hotels to set up oxygen beds
With its back to the wall in the face of the onslaught by the second Covid-19 wave, the Karnataka government has decided to set up another panel of experts to suggest ways to fight the expected third wave, with particular reference to Bengaluru which has been worst-hit by the virus.
This was among the decisions taken following a meeting chaired by Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Saturday with city-based doctors and experts. It was decided to requisition hotels in the city to set up oxygenated beds. It was also decided to rope in final-year medical and nursing students to overcome the staff shortage, and in return give them grace marks.
The meeting also decided to accelerate the pace of vaccination.
Some of the decisions take during the meeting were:
- Taking steps to set up oxygen beds in hotels with the use of oxygen concentrators.
- Beds with a centralized oxygenation system to be converted into ICUs.
- Final-year medical and nursing students to be requisitioned to meet staff shortage and in return to be given grace marks (final-year examinations have been postponed).
- Final-year students of pharmacy, physiotherapy, Ayush, dentistry and hospital management to be requisitioned.
- Registration to be allowed with Karnataka Medical Council for those who have completed a medical degree abroad and to use their services to treat Covid patients.
- Strengthening the telemedicine facility in partnership with private hospitals to ensure that asymptomatic patients are given advice properly at their residence. This will minimize asymptomatics getting admission in hospitals and blocking beds
- Taking steps to convert common beds in medical college hospitals into oxygenated beds.
- Government assistance for installing oxygen generation plants in private medical colleges.
- Identifying low-performing medical personnel and using them in Covid-related work.
- Remdesivir and oxygen are being used irrationally, and an audit system to be in place.
- Forming an expert panel to suggest effective steps against the 3rd Covid wave.
- Accelerating Covid vaccination.
- Increasing incentives to physicians engaged in Covid treatment.
- Treating doctors/medical personnel at government expense, if they are infected while on duty.
- If final-year medical students are utilized for treating Covid patients, they have to be given vaccination on priority.