Hyderabad: The state run Gandhi Hospital on Tuesday rubbished reports of a seven to eight hour delay in disposing the body of a COVID-19 patient and said it could not be moved for some time because employees were not available due to the ongoing strike by non-regular staff.
Reports in a section of the media claimed that the body of the COVID-19 patient was not removed even after seven hours, leading to a foul smell emanating from it.
Hospital Superintendent Raja Rao said the patient concerned passed away at 1 PM and an ECG had to be taken for confirmation. Tbe necessary documentation had to be completed.
“The body could not be moved for some time as only a few regular employees were available because of the strike by non-regular staff,” he said.
The hospital also had to manage six Intensive Care Units and all other wards with the available staff and concentrate more on patient care and treatment, he said.
…”but it (delay) is not seven-eight hours. And during this time, a dead body will not putrefy and give out a foul smell,” he said.
The hospital would make efforts to ensure that such incidents do not recur, he said.
The non-regular nursing staff in the hospital have been on strike for the last few days in support of their demands, including job security and hike in wages.
The government has already assured them that their demands would be looked into, official sources said.
The sanitation and security staff working on outsourcing basis also went on strike on Tuesday
The outsourcing contractor has been told that action would be taken if they don’t report for duty, the sources said. Gandhi Hospital is the designated government hospital for COVID-19 patients.