Fight against Covid-19 needs more seriousness
While the spread of Covid-19 with 46 deaths and 4285 infected people in Jammu and Kashmir already giving sleepless nights to the people here, the latest reports about the efficacy and efficiency of coronavirus testing labs has added to the scare people are face to face with. In health emergencies, everyone feels safe only with doctors and at health centres. But if the authenticity of these health centres comes under doubt, people have nowhere to go.
The authenticity of Covid-19 testing in Kashmir has come under the clouds of suspicion as several people got two different reports from the two testing facilities of the Union Territory. Reports suggested that some people including a senior journalist, who were tested positive for the deadly COVID pandemic at Chest Disease hospital laboratory, tested negative for the virus at SKIMS Soura only a day after first testing.
The issue has created doubts among the populace about the testing facilities of government run hospitals. If the test reports of two main hospitals, that are dealing with the Covid-19 patients vary in such a short span of time, one has to draw the conclusion that one of the two test facilities has some problem and mind it, the problem can cost anyone his/her life. Though the Advisor to the Lt. Governor, Baseer Ahmad Khan has told a news agency that the matter would be looked into so that the real picture comes to fore, the issue is very serious and should not be tackled like other routine issues.
It goes without saying that the UT administration is overburdened in the wake of pandemic and so are the health institutions but this is the time that the concerned authorities wake up to the challenge and prove their worth. In the din of everyday spike in corona positive cases and deaths, it seems, the concerned authorities are not having an eye on other related issues which are equally important to contain the pandemic. The issue of administrative quarantine centres is one issue that needs the immediate attention of the government. Most of the people, under administrative quarantine, have complained about lack of facilities in these centres. In some centres even the very basic, face masks, have not been provided to inmates, who are there not because they have tested positive but because someone in their families, dead or alive, has been found infected.
As for as paid quarantine is concerned, some people, who reached here from other parts of the country or abroad, narrated some shocking episodes. They appreciated the arrangements at the airport and transportation uptill TRC, but some of them said that TRC looked like Old Delhi railway station with touts of different hotels, which have been hired by the government, luring the incoming passengers to stay for quarantine in their respective hotels. These and other such issues need to be taken up on priority by the UT administration otherwise, given the history of corruption in J&K, time will be not far away when people will be buying Covid-19 Negative certificates by paying a few bucks. (By the way, who knows, may be the process has already started).