Navi Mumbai police quarantine centre to be SOP for other units

Mumbai: Amid rising COVID-19 cases in the police force, Navi Mumbai police have set up a quarantine centre for their personnel, a senior official said on Sunday.

The process that went into setting up this centre will be part of the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for creating similar centres in other police units in Maharashtra, he said.

While social distancing measures and stay at home orders are being implemented across the country, police as the first responders are exposed to the COVID-19 risk as they are on the road, implementing lockdown norms, the official said.

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Despite making use of preventive measures like face masks, sanitisers, head gear and hand gloves, several police personnel have tested coronavirus positive.

As asking for priority treatment in government-run hospital creates ill-will among the government department, an exclusive arrangement for the police force was thought of, he said.

The first in setting up such a facility, envisaged by Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Kumar, was to identify a building with separate rooms/halls which can accommodate around 40 policemen.

The facility also needed adequate number of toilets, a separate room for women police officers and another for family members of policemen, besides a rooms for suspected patients and asymptomatic cases.

Navi Mumbai police identified the Police Guest House and Savali building at Nerul as quarantine centres.

The building was sanitised with sodium hydrochloride solution. A motor pump spray was provided to sanitise Savali building regularly.

Forty hospitals beds with side tables were made available along with pillows, bed sheets and pillow covers.

The first floor of the three-storey building was allocated to police personnel whose swabs have been collected and who need to be quarantined as they dont have exclusive space at their residence to stay.

Whenever a police personnel is identified as a COVID- 19 suspect at a police station or on field, he/she is brought to Savali quarantine centre by a dedicated ambulance.

If there is need to take a swab/test, the person is taken to hospital. After the test, the suspect is given the option to either stay at home if there is room for home quarantine or asked to stay at Savali quarantine centre, the official said.

Any quarantined person showing symptoms like fever, cough or any respiratory congestion is immediately shifted a nearby hospital. A team led by ACP-Crime prepares a daily chart of all police personnel undergoing treatment.

Monitoring and supervision of hospitalised persons of Navi Mumbai police is also done by collecting data on fever, oxygen and ventilator support of the patients, he said.

Senior police inspector Ajaykumar Landge of Panvel police station said the Navi Mumbai police commissioner has provided face masks, hand gloves, goggles, sanitisers and head gear to all police personnel in the commissionerate.

Kumar has ensured that there is a handwash facility at each police station and at check post/nakabandi place, Landge said. The senior IPS officer has also provided oximeters and thermal scanners at all police stations, he added.

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