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IMA Press Release - Recommendations to handle the new wave of casualties

IMAlive, Posted on May 25th, 2020

IMA Press Release - Recommendations to handle the new wave of casualties

We are into a very serious phase of CoVid 19. With the non resident Keralites

arriving from abroad and other states of the country, even a little laxity will prove

baneful. In this regard Indian Medical Association Kerala State branch would like to

submit certain important recommendations.


1. We are dealing with a deadly virus which does not have restrictions or limitations. It

affects any human beings and does not have an emotional quotient at all. Non resident

Keralites have to come back, we agree, but the present arrangements are unscientific.

Limit the number of persons returning, prioritise; those who have lost jobs, pregnant

ladies and those who urgently need may be allowed to come. Better to avoid people from

Hot spots and containment zones for the time being, necessary arrangements for them to

be ensured locally.


2. Every person entering the state should be registered and traceable. Insist on

institutional room quarantine; home quarantine is creating problems with people

breaking the quarantine rules. Contact spread is mainly due to this. Obviously this will

speed up community spread as well.


3. Number of testing must be increased, at least 100 tests per 1Lakh population, only by

that the nature of spread and severity can be assessed. Other states are way ahead. Testing

facility should be provided in private sector; labs and hospitals should be given

permission. Private hospitals should be collection centres of swabs from suspected

individuals. The periodic assessment and change in strategy can be done only by this

method. Till now designated CoVid hospitals could manage the patient load, scenario

will change in a couple of days or a week. All hospitals, including private sector, should

be equipped to deal with CoVid and non CoVid patients simultaneously


4. Many patients have been treated and cured. The symptomatology, progress of the

disease, complications and treatment schedule of these patients are not revealed yet, the

medical community of the state does not know. These data are not to be kept secret,

should be made available to the medical community. The countries which have the

disease has come out with numerous studies for evolving an optimal treatment schedule,

surprisingly our state doesn't have any study or research paper. The data is not shared yet.

IMA being a professional scientific body is ready for such studies and research and had

repeatedly requested the Govt to share the data. We had discussion with the expert

committee and they also had requested the Govt. Kindly consider this matter with utmost



5. Health care workers are becoming CoVid positive and this is to be viewed very

seriously. The infection control program has to be revamped, the quality and availability

of protection equipment - PPEs, N95 masks etc- to be ensured. Health care workers

getting infected is a very serious situation leading to shortage of front line warriors and

this should be dealt on a war footing. Detailed analysis and remedial measures are to be

taken forthwith.


6. Private hospitals treating CoVid patients will be necessary in the next stage. Non

CoVid patients suffer denial of treatment due to the lock down and this problem is being

addressed by IMA by training the private hospital staff to deal with the CoVid patients as

well. In the event of taking over the private hospitals, closed ones or sick units should be

the first priority and then the larger hospitals and so on. This should be on clear cut

conditions like salary of the hospital staff including doctors and other establishment

charges. A section should be provided for non CoVid patients as well.


7. Reverse quarantine should be enforced, those above 65 yrs of age and children should

stay inside their home. No excuses should be entertained.


8. Break the chain campaign to be continued, hand hygiene, proper use of masks and

social distancing in every walks of life. People are a bit relaxed now, not sticking on to

the directions of Health authorities and extra effort from all of us should correct the



9. Staggered exit of lock down should be ensured with strict adherence to the general

guidelines. Even little deviation/laxity is to cost us very many lives as seen in other



10. We also suggest a periodic interaction between the expert technical committee of the

Govt and the medical fraternity including IMA and speciality organisations, preferably

twice a week. This will help the whole medical community in dealing with the disease in

a collective manner.


Kerala has set an example to the world to deal with a pandemic scientifically and

effectively and IMA and healthcare workers are really proud. But the recent

developments are not feasible or favourable to sustain this achievement. No other

considerations except scientific data and mode should influence the Govt and the people

to tide over the situation, otherwise it'll be a debacle with no point of return.

IMA believe that it is our duty to speak out science and scientific evidence which is often

unpleasant truth.

Let's fight together,

Dr. Abraham Varghese

State President, IMA KSB

Indian Medical Association Kerala State branch would like to submit these important recommendations.

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