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Bengaluru: Sent back by three hospitals, Covid doctor loses 28-day battle to virus

BENGALURU: A 50-year-old Covid-19 warrior doctor, who had been refused admission by three private hospitals, succumbed to the virus at a hospital of Bangalore Medical College and Research Institute (BMCRI) on Thursday.

Dr Manjunath ST was on Covid-19 duty at Chikkamudavadi primary health centre in Kanakapura taluk, Ramanagara district, when he contracted the virus. He was the second member of his family to succumb to the virus; his father-in-law died two days ago.

Dr Nagendra Kumar, a medical officer with the BBMP, told TOI that his brother-in-law Dr Manjunath developed high fever and breathlessness on June 25. “It was a suspected case, and he was awaiting his test report. We, doctors, could not get a bed for him in three private hospitals we went to. All three hospitals rejected admission as he didn’t have his Covid-19 ,” Dr Nagendra said.

After the first hospital rejected admission, the latter ones asked why the previous hospital had done so before taking the same decision.

“Finally, four of us sat on the road in front of a fourth private hospital in Kumaraswamy Layout after which he was admitted on June 25. His condition improved for a while before it began deteriorating and we shifted him to the BMCRI on July 9. He was on ventilator. The doctors had said his lung wasn’t expanding and he required to be in the prone position, but that was not done,” said Dr Nagendra.

Six members of doc’s family were positive

According to Dr Nagendra, Dr Manjunath required the assistance of a physiotherapist to be put in the prone position, and no physiotherapist agreed to wear PPE and enter the Covid ICU. “We sought help of a private physiotherapist, who could have helped my brother-in-law and the man agreed to come. BMCRI approval for the same was under process,” he explained.

Six members of Dr Manjunath’s joint family have tested positive. They include his dentist-wife and their 14-year-old son, who have since recovered. “Our families suffered because we are doctors. We should have been labourers instead,” said Dr Nagendra, who was seen waiting for Dr Manjunath’s body in front of Victoria Hospital mortuary on Wednesday.

Dr Om Prakash Patil, director, health and family welfare department, said he was aware of the demise of Dr Manjunath and was collecting more details.

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Written by Kya Miyaa

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