Bihar vaccine India covid
A medic gives the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to to a woman at a government dispensary in Patna on Monday, April 19, 2021. Image Credit: ANI

Patna: The healthcare system in Bihar is under severe stress with 300 doctors and hundreds of nurses and paramedics of different government and private hospitals in home isolation after having tested positive for COVID-19.

A total of 49 doctors have succumbed to COVID-19 in Bihar since the coronavirus hit the state last year, an Indian Medical Association (IMA) official said.

Dr Ajay Kumar Singh, Bihar unit president of the IMA, said the healthcare system in both the urban and rural areas has become a matter of concern as doctors are getting infected every day. There are about 20,000 doctors and 40,000-50,000 health staff in the state, according to an IMA official.

In Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH), the premier government medical college and hospital in the state, 62 doctors and 50 nurses have tested positive, while in Nalanda Medical College and Hospital 25 doctors and 27 nurses have tested positive.

Similarly, 102 health workers, including 25 junior doctors, 17 senior doctors and 65 nurses have been infected with the coronavirus while around 15 doctors have tested positive at ESIC Hospital in Bihta, Patna.

Dr IS Thakur, PMCH superintendent, said the absence of several doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers has affected the healthcare system at the hospital.

“Many of these doctors were involved in conducting COVID-19 tests and microbiological examination of samples. Some of them were also deputed in COVID-29 wards,” PMCH superintendent added. The hospital administration is now studying the level of severity and other effects on these doctors since most of them had taken both doses of the vaccine.

The recovery rate in the state, meanwhile, is falling fast in the second wave of infection. According to a report of the state health department, the recovery rate has registered a decline of 13.02 per cent in the past 18 days in Bihar.

On April 1, the recovery rate in the state was recorded at 98.69 per cent which came down to 85.67 per cent on April 18.

The state government on Sunday imposed fresh restrictions which include enforcing night curfew, closing schools, and shutting all business establishments by 6pm. The government also announced to close all government and private offices by 5pm to check the spread of coronavirus.