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Coronavirus: Fatality rate of frontline physicians high

Published : 14 Jun 2020 09:54 PM | Updated : 06 Sep 2020 06:05 PM

As there is no respite for frontline doctors directly involved in the fight against coronavirus, the death rate amongst frontlinefighters is high considering their numbers.

A number of doctors have already died and dozens have tested positive in the country, raising the fear amongst them of getting infected at any time and also mounting the psychological burden.

`According to the list of Awami League-backed doctors' professional organization SwadhinataChikitsak Parishad (Swachip) 36 doctors have passed away until Sunday. The death rate is 3.36 percent compared to total number of tests and infections.
On the other hand, 1,127 nurses have been affected by corona across the country till yesterday. Three of them died.

Physicians getting infected and dying helplesslywith coronavirus have become ubiquitous as they are battling the COVID-19 disease as frontline fighters, several experts told this to The Bangladesh Post.

Indicating soaring number of infections and deathsof physicians, public health expert Dr. Golam Kibria of Dhaka Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) explained that, “Most of the hospitalsthat treat corona patients face the dearth of safety apparatus for their medical staffs and doctors. Apart from this many are suffering with complicated diseases [kidney, liver, cardio vascular]”
For example, there are no negative pressure chambers in not more than two or three hospitals. As a result, the entire ICU unit is filled with viruses. In the same way that ICU patients are at risk, those who treat them also have a greater chance of becoming infected at any moment, Dr Kibria added.

He also mentioned that, “In addition, patients who use ventilatorsmay have droplets coming out of their mouths at any moment, causing serious infection to the doctors and paramedics who work near the patients.”

The first doctor with corona infectionMoin Uddin Ahmed died on April 15. He worked as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine at MAG Osmani Medical College, Sylhet, according to Bangladesh Medical Association (BMA).

BMA General Secretary Professor Ehteshamul Haque Chowdhury Dulalexpressing concern over the demise of doctors highlighted more than 80 percent of the doctors who died of coronawere above 65 years and each of them had complications of various chronic diseases.

"Another reason, I observed was that the hospitals that treated corona patients did not have adequate protective structures," he added.

The BMA general secretary also said, "Even in the midst of grief, it is a matter of relief or reassurance you can say. Most of the doctors have recovered and returned to their works serving the patients.”

Institute of Epidemiology Disease Control and Research (IEDCR)Chief Scientific Officer ASM Alamgir said, "We have already started hospital-based study to find out the cause of deaths of doctors and other medical personnel. The results are yet to be prepared.”
“Not only frontline doctors died, a large number of managerial level doctors alsoexpired,” he added.