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In pics | Non-COVID hospitals face financial difficulties as patients postpone surgeries, cosmetic procedures

Updated : 2020-07-13 20:14:36

As patients with non-COVID-19 illnesses postpone treatments such as non-essential surgeries and cosmetic procedures, hospital beds in smaller nursing homes are lying vacant, with financial difficulties mounting on doctors who run them.

As patients with non-COVID-19 illnesses postpone treatments such as non-essential surgeries and cosmetic procedures, hospital beds in smaller nursing homes are lying vacant, with financial difficulties mounting on doctors who run them. For others -- specialist pulmonologists for instance -- the number of patients calling on them has seen a sharp spike. CNBC-TV18's Alisha Sachdev visited two nursing homes with 10 to 30 beds to get a status check on small hospitals and nursing homes in Delhi. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
As patients with non-COVID-19 illnesses postpone treatments such as non-essential surgeries and cosmetic procedures, hospital beds in smaller nursing homes are lying vacant, with financial difficulties mounting on doctors who run them. For others -- specialist pulmonologists for instance -- the number of patients calling on them has seen a sharp spike. CNBC-TV18's Alisha Sachdev visited two nursing homes with 10 to 30 beds to get a status check on small hospitals and nursing homes in Delhi. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Information desks at hospitals now look different. For health workers at non-COVID hospitals, wearing protective gowns, masks and shields are essential as they implement enhanced SOPs for all visiting patients – including temperature screening, oxygen-level checks on an oximeter, and inquiries related to COVID-19 related symptoms, before they are referred to the doctor's chambers. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Information desks at hospitals now look different. For health workers at non-COVID hospitals, wearing protective gowns, masks and shields are essential as they implement enhanced SOPs for all visiting patients – including temperature screening, oxygen-level checks on an oximeter, and inquiries related to COVID-19 related symptoms, before they are referred to the doctor's chambers. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Due to the lack of proper medical infrastructure, such as ICUs and ventilator beds for critical patients, some nursing homes are not catering to COVID-19 patients. Moreover, the panic from admitting a COVID-19 positive patient, other patients fear to visit hospitals, which is causing additional challenges. Doctors are treating asymptomatic COVID-19 patients at home or referring them to bigger hospitals and dedicated COVID-19 centres. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Due to the lack of proper medical infrastructure, such as ICUs and ventilator beds for critical patients, some nursing homes are not catering to COVID-19 patients. Moreover, the panic from admitting a COVID-19 positive patient, other patients fear to visit hospitals, which is causing additional challenges. Doctors are treating asymptomatic COVID-19 patients at home or referring them to bigger hospitals and dedicated COVID-19 centres. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Dr Pushpinder Khurana who runs Kailash Nursing Home told CNBC-TV18 that financial losses at the hospital have been mounting as patients are postposing non-critical surgeries and cosmetic operations. Many others are preferring to consult doctors over the phone or via video calls. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Dr Pushpinder Khurana who runs Kailash Nursing Home told CNBC-TV18 that financial losses at the hospital have been mounting as patients are postposing non-critical surgeries and cosmetic operations. Many others are preferring to consult doctors over the phone or via video calls. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Nursing homes are keeping records of all patients visiting them and have made three-ply masks and N-95 masks available at the clinics. Both the hospitals CNBC-TV18 visited in West Delhi did not report any staff or doctor contracting the virus. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Nursing homes are keeping records of all patients visiting them and have made three-ply masks and N-95 masks available at the clinics. Both the hospitals CNBC-TV18 visited in West Delhi did not report any staff or doctor contracting the virus. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Only four beds out of the 26 were occupied here, whereas the number would average around 20 prior to the pandemic. Even Dr Khurana does not expect the situation to improve until the year-end. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18
Only four beds out of the 26 were occupied here, whereas the number would average around 20 prior to the pandemic. Even Dr Khurana does not expect the situation to improve until the year-end. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18
Specialist doctors such as pulmonologists and dialysis specialists are seeing increased strain. Dr Gaurav Nijhara of Nijhara Hospital said that about 20 percent to 30 percent of calls he receives are panic calls from patients who complain of somatic problems. He added that
Specialist doctors such as pulmonologists and dialysis specialists are seeing increased strain. Dr Gaurav Nijhara of Nijhara Hospital said that about 20 percent to 30 percent of calls he receives are panic calls from patients who complain of somatic problems. He added that "good patients" with high chances of recovery in the case of COVID, and non-COVID ailments in other cases are taking longer to get treated because of the various precautions and checks small nursing homes have to put in place to keep staff and fellow patients safe. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18) - Representational)
Doctors are advising COVID-19 tests to patients who want to get operated upon, although the government has not made this mandatory. Dr Nijhara said that a COVID-19 positive patient under operation may have a 20 percent higher mortality rate and the risk needs to be communicated to the patient. For laproscopic surgeries, Dr Khuarana says a COVID-19 test is essential. Patients who do not show symptoms don't have to take a test to be admitted. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Doctors are advising COVID-19 tests to patients who want to get operated upon, although the government has not made this mandatory. Dr Nijhara said that a COVID-19 positive patient under operation may have a 20 percent higher mortality rate and the risk needs to be communicated to the patient. For laproscopic surgeries, Dr Khuarana says a COVID-19 test is essential. Patients who do not show symptoms don't have to take a test to be admitted. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Currently, because movement of people is restricted, the occurrence of common flu, diarrhea, gastrointestinal diseases is minimal, according to Dr Nijhara. Most admissions in hospitals, therefore, are emergency and trauma patients. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Currently, because movement of people is restricted, the occurrence of common flu, diarrhea, gastrointestinal diseases is minimal, according to Dr Nijhara. Most admissions in hospitals, therefore, are emergency and trauma patients. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Not all physicians are treating COVID-19 patients as their nursing homes are ill-equipped to take on such patients. However, Dr Nijhara said that at his hospital, COVID positive patients are admitted as mandated by law in an isolated ward. He has also been attending to many multiple patients remotely, and a vast majority have already recovered. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
Not all physicians are treating COVID-19 patients as their nursing homes are ill-equipped to take on such patients. However, Dr Nijhara said that at his hospital, COVID positive patients are admitted as mandated by law in an isolated ward. He has also been attending to many multiple patients remotely, and a vast majority have already recovered. (Image: Alisha Sachdev/CNBC-TV18)
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