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Several LRH doctors test positive for coronavirus

By Bureau report
February 02, 2021

PESHAWAR: A number of doctors and other healthcare providers at the Lady Reading Hospital (LRH) have tested positive for coronavirus and most of them have isolated themselves at home rather than getting admitted to the hospital where they have been serving other patients.

Senior faculty members as well as officials of the hospital administration told The News that almost all the doctors preferred to keep their disease secret from others and even from their colleagues due to a host of reasons. “This is very painful to let you know that around a dozen senior doctors are presently suffering from the coronavirus but they have isolated themselves at their homes. Some have even acquired oxygen gas cylinders from a market but they don’t want others to know about their disease,” a senior faculty member of LRH told The News on condition of anonymity.

LRH is Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s oldest and largest public sector hospital. Among those diagnosed with the infectious disease is a noted general surgeon, KP’s lone paediatric gastroenterologist.

According to sources, the paediatric gastroenterologist had arranged an oxygen gas cylinder from the Hayatabad Medical Complex (HMC) and is under treatment in his home.“There are multiple reasons why doctors don’t want to disclose their disease. Some don’t want the hospital administration to know about their disease as there is limited sick leave. Others don’t want to lose the so-called health professional allowance paid to them if they come to the hospital during Covid-19 emergency,” added the faculty member.

Most of these doctors and other health workers contracted the disease from patients. Officials of the hospital preferred to keep the sickness secret so that they can attend private clinics, which could be quite dangerous for their patients and attendants.

“How can I know if someone doesn’t tell me about their disease? This is really unethical and unprofessional attitude if someone has tested positive for the viral infection and they don’t tell people about it and meet them regularly,” the faculty member asked.

Meanwhile, a video of pulmonologist, Dr Aneela has shocked and caused pain to members of the doctors’ community, particularly those who knew this soft-spoken patient-friendly physician at the LRH.

“On 29 January was my 5th Covid day, I was in ARDS. All inflammatory markers were raised, I had 33 weeks’ pregnancy. Which was primary infertility of 5th year. Gynae team specially Dr Wajeeha, Dr Tanweer Shafqat , Dr Nazish, Dr Professor Rehana Raheem, Dr Sumera Naseem, all decided to do emergency C Section of 34 weeks of pregnancy and now the baby is in ICU with Dr Khalil,” she stated in a statement.

She said she was in the ICU in LRH between life and death, had a cocktail of remdisiver and Actemra, on CPAP maintaining saturation of 98-99. “Now doctors are hopeful. I am keeping my willpower strong. I am hearing you are praying from the core of your heart. Everyone is very highly cooperative including LRH doctors, outside doctors, from America, England all are guiding and in personal touch with and Dr Zafar and my sister Dr Rozina, Dr Arshad Javaid Sahib, Dr Yousaf, are also closely in touch. Please pray for me that this difficult time passes into a happy and healthy time. Please forgive me if I had hurt anybody like in family members or working juniors and seniors,” said Dr Aneela’s message from her ICU bed.

One faculty member of the LRH told The News he couldn’t control his emotions after watching the painful video of Dr Aneela and reading her touching statement. “She belongs to a well-respected family and she was very cooperative and helpful to patients,” he said.

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