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Doctors, Healthcare Workers Testing Positive A Worry As Covid Cases Spike – dot newz

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Covid Wave In India: The third wave threatens to overwhelm India’s medical infrastructure.

New Delhi:

A worrying number of doctors, hospital staff, and healthcare workers – the first line of defence against the coronavirus – are among tens of thousands testing positive for COVID-19 every day, as the third wave threatens to overwhelm the country’s medical infrastructure.

Over the past few days around 150 medical professionals each from Delhi and Bihar have tested positive, as have nearly 300 from Bengal and an unspecified number from Bengaluru.

In Mumbai 157 doctors at the King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital have tested positive, with another 80 falling ill at Sion Hospital and nearly as many at others in the city. Across Maharashtra over 260 have tested positive so far, the Association of Resident Doctors has said.

And with Covid cases continuing to spike as they are, the prospect of a shortage of qualified medical professionals available to treat patients brings back worrying memories of the second wave, when the government had to turn to medical students to offset the human resource gap.

“There will be more cases, more hospitalisations… Covid is rising exponentially in the city – faster than second wave. Earlier we used to see two to three admissions a day. Now we see nearly 20 daily,” Dr Suresh Kumar, Director of the national capital’s LNJP Hospital, told NDTV.

Dr Seher Qureshi, the Medical Superintendent at Max Hospital in Delhi‘s Saket, said an entire floor had been dedicated for Covid cases, and that daily admissions had increased from three to 10.

20 healthcare workers from this hospital have tested positive.

In Mumbai the situation is as dire, but doctors are hopeful patients will spend less time admitted, particularly if fully vaccinated, and that infected colleagues will recover quickly to re-join the battle.

“Whoever is getting admitted they are improving in three to five days… they are testing negative, and we are discharging them. Resident doctors are our backbone… recently 42 turned positive but the good thing is those who were admitted earlier are fit to resume their duties,” Dr Akash Khobragade, the Medical Superintendent at St George’s Hospital, told NDTV.

Dr Bhushan Wankhede, the Chief Resident Medical Officer from the same hospital, tested positive for Covid on December 30. He was back at work yesterday, after testing negative on Tuesday.

He underlined the point that doctors are at risk due to frequent contact with Covid-positive patients.

Bengaluru, which reported over 3,600 cases yesterday – a 76 per cent increase in 24 hours – was overwhelmed with cases last year. This time medical professionals are pleading with people to follow safety rules – wear face masks, sanitise hands and surfaces, and maintain social distance.

“The numbers are increasing and that is going to be a huge issue. It has doubled in a matter of two days… the ’emergency’ wing is always busy,” Dr Shylesh, Consultant (Emergency Medicine) at the city’s Aster CMI Hospital told NDTV.

The Indian Medical Association waved a red flag early last month when it urged the centre to announce booster vaccine doses for all healthcare workers.

Three weeks later, Prime Minister Narendra Modi did, but these will not be rolled out for another four days – on January 10 – and a few more days will pass before the third dose takes full effect.

And it isn’t just Covid that is keeping doctors away – a stand-off with the centre over selection criteria for NEET, for admission to medical courses – has contributed to the problem.

“Our work has tripled… we are feeling burdened already (and) a whole batch of doctors hasn’t come yet due to NEET-PG issues,” a Delhi hospital worker, who also pointed out the physical toll of wearing full-body PPE kits for longer and longer periods, told NDTV.

With India firmly in the grip of a third wave of infections – over 90,000 were reported in 24-hour period this morning – it is critical to ensure there are enough doctors to treat Covid patients.

The Omicron variant may lead to less severe symptoms, but the increased transmissibility makes it, perhaps, more dangerous than the Delta variant – simply because it can overwhelm healthcare.

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Shiv Sena, NCP To Contest Goa Assembly Elections Together – dot newz

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Mumbai:

Shiv Sena and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) have decided to contest the upcoming Goa Assembly elections together in alliance, Shiv Sena leader and MP Sanjay Raut said on Sunday.

Speaking to ANI, Raut said, “Shiv Sena and NCP will contest together in Goa assembly elections. There will be a discussion on seat sharing on January 18. NCP’s senior leader Praful Patel will discuss seat-sharing formula in Goa on January 18. Only after that, it will be clear who will contest on how many seats.”

“Political dynamics are different in Maharashtra and Goa. NCP, Shiv Sena, Congress are in alliance in Maharashtra. However, at the moment Congress has decided to contest alone without forming an alliance with any other party in the state,” he said.

Goa elections are set to be held in a single phase on February 14. The counting of votes will be held on March 10.

In view of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, Shiv Sena leader did not comment much on Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s decision to contest from Gorakhpur.

“I will not make any comment on Yogi ji’s decision to contest from Gorakhpur. He has been fielded from his native constituency. So, it is a good thing. I have heard that Aparna Yadav is going to join BJP. It’s good to know,” he said.

Yadav is the daughter in law of Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh Yadav.

Meanwhile, elections for the 403 assembly constituencies in Uttar Pradesh will be held in seven phases starting February 10, the Election Commission said. The polling in Uttar Pradesh will be held on February 10, 14, 20, 23, 27 and March 3 and 7 in seven phases.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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“India Feels Proud”: PM Modi On 1 Year Of Vaccination Drive – dot newz

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi said the vaccination drive added great strength to fight against Covid.

New Delhi:

Lauding India’s COVID-19 vaccination drive as it completes a year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said it has added great strength to the fight against the pandemic and has resulted in saving lives and protecting livelihoods.

When the pandemic first struck, not much was known about the virus. However, our scientists and innovators immersed themselves in developing vaccines, he said. India feels proud that our nation has been able to contribute to fighting the pandemic through vaccines, PM Modi tweeted.

“I salute each and every individual who is associated with the vaccination drive,” he said, adding that the role of our doctors, nurses and healthcare workers is exceptional.

“When we see glimpses of people being vaccinated in remote areas, or our healthcare workers taking the vaccines there, our hearts and minds are filled with pride,” he said.

The prime minister asserted that India’s approach to fighting the pandemic will always remain science based. Health infrastructure is also being augmented to ensure that fellow citizens get proper care, he said, asking people to keep following all COVID-19 related protocols.

The countrywide vaccination drive against COVID-19 on Sunday completed one year, during which over 156.76 crore vaccine doses were administered.

According to Health Ministry officials, over 92 per cent of the adult population have received at least one dose while over 68 per cent have been fully vaccinated. The Centre will issue a postal stamp this afternoon to mark the completion of one year of the inoculation drive.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)



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“We Invite You”: Maharashtra’s Red Carpet For Elon Musk After Telangana – dot newz

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Elon Musk had said Tesla is “working through” a lot of challenges with the Indian government. (File)

New Delhi:

Another state has now invited US billionaire Elon Musk to invest after he said that electric car pioneer Tesla was “working through” a lot of challenges with the Indian government ahead of long-awaited plans to launch in the country.

After Telangana’s invitation earlier this week, a Maharashtra minister today offered Mr Musk a place to set up Tesla’s manufacturing plant in his state.

Maharashtra Water Resources Minister Jayant Patil, in a reply to Mr Musk’s tweet, said, “Maharashtra is one of the most progressive states in India. We will provide you all the necessary help from Maharashtra for you to get established in India.”

“We invite you to establish your manufacturing plant in Maharashtra,” the Nationalist Congress Party leader added.

Earlier, Telangana minister KT Rama Rao had invited the Tesla Inc’s chief executive to set shop in his state and said that his government will be “happy to partner Tesla in working through the challenges”.

Mr Musk, in response to a tweet asking him about a potential India launch date, had not identified the “challenges” being worked on with the government.

Tesla had plans to begin selling imported cars in India last year and has been lobbying the government to lower import duties, which can be as high as 100 percent, on electric vehicles before it enters the market.

Elon Musk had tweeted last July that Tesla wanted to enter India “but import duties are the highest in the world by far of any large country”.

Even as Tesla is holding out for a cut in import duties, luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz will start assembling the electric version of its flagship S-Class sedan, the EQS, in India later this year.



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