3-yr-old girl, 16 others discharged in Patiala

Were asymptomatic for over three days, sent home as per revised policy

3-yr-old girl, 16 others discharged in Patiala

File photo

Karam Prakash

Tribune News Service

Patiala, May 20

A three-year-old Covid-19 positive girl, who was admitted to an isolation ward of Government Rajindra Hospital for the past 33 days, was discharged today. The girl was discharged as per the revised guidelines according to which an asymptomatic patient can be discharged from the isolation ward of the hospital.

Ironically, the girl was discharged without ascertaining her recovery from coronavirus. She had tested positive for Covid-19 thrice during her stay at the isolation facility.

In fact, if a patient is asymptomatic for more than 3 days is eligible for discharge without testing.

Moreover, a majority of the patients admitted to the Rajindra Hospital took more than 21 days to recover completely from the disease despite having been asymptomatic. In some cases, patients even took 28 days to recover.

The three-year-old girl was among the 17 patients who were discharged from the isolation facility today.

“The new discharge policy is not patient-friendly,” said experts.

Health experts said there was no scientific evidence that asymptomatic patient were free from virus after 10 days. There was also no evidence that asymptomatic patients do not spread virus.

Meantime, the Health Department said patients discharged as per the new policy should have requisite facilities at their residence for self-isolation.

After being discharged from the hospital, patients are required to have clean and well-ventilated rooms with attached washrooms at their home. Close contacts are also required to follow the suit.

The Health Department will make sure that home isolation is as per the guidelines. If anyone doesn’t fulfil the conditions of home isolation, then he/she might not be discharged from the hospital to check the spread of virus.

Patiala Civil Surgeon Dr Harish Malhotra said the new discharge policy was formulated by renowned epidemiologists who suggested that the virus becomes inactive after seven days.

He said: “The virus becomes inactive after a week. Therefore, the patient will not be able to spread the virus further.”

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