Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has written to Maharashtra’s Uddhav Thackeray urging him to ensure the safety of nurses attending to COVID-19 patients in Mumbai and other parts of the state.
Mr Vijayan said that the Kerala government was receiving calls from several nurses and their family members to point out “a lack of adequate precaution” against the novel coronavirus.
“Unfortunately, we are now hearing the news that a number of nurses are tested as positive for the coronavirus in your state especially in Mumbai. We are receiving frantic telephone calls from them and their family members. Many of them are informing us that there is a lack of adequate precaution to prevent the contagion of the disease. It is understood that nurses tested positive for COVID 19 and others are accommodated in the same space,” the Kerala Chief Minister said in the letter.
He referred to the video conference with Prime Minister Narendra Modi where he said: “It was accepted that utmost importance should be given to the protection of doctors; nurses and other health volunteers who are working round the clock in treating patients.”
He said the vast majority of the nursing community serving within India and abroad belongs to Kerala.
“I would like to draw your kind attention to the situation which has been reported to us regarding the plight of the nurses in Mumbai. They are requesting that necessary steps should be taken to provide PPE and to provide separate and secure accommodation to employees who are diagnosed positive for the coronavirus and those who presently have no symptoms,” Mr Vijayan added.
“It is stated by them that the family members are also quarantined in the COVID-19 hospitals,” he added in the letter.
Mr Vijayan, in his letter to Mr Thackeray, said: “In this hour of crisis, the nation needs to stand with them and give them the confidence which they have been giving all along to others.”
He requested immediate action to alleviate the concerns of the nurses from Kerala working in Maharashtra.
According to the Union health ministry, the total number of COVID-19 cases in the country has now risen to 4,281.