A patient of COVID-19 was allowed home quarantine in Mumbai because no hospital bed could be made available for him. The incident came to light from Antop Hill in Wadala East, one of the worst-hit areas of Mumbai.
The civic body did not even seal the building or floor where the man stays even hours after his infection was detected. Further, the municipal corporation, known as Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) failed to sanitise the complex.
After CNN-News18 broke the story, the administration swung into action and BMC employees took the patient to Seven Hills Hospital late in the afternoon on Wednesday.
The building was later declared as containment zone. Two lifts of the building were sealed.
In this F/North ward, the authorities have said they have organised several fever clinics to detect presence of the virus among locals.
On May 19, the man living on the 13th floor of a slum redevelopment building tested positive. Later in the day, he was taken to Somaiya Hospital, but no bed was available. So the authorities instead of shifting him another hospital, allowed him to be taken back home by his family.
Neighbours were not even asked to self-quarantine, neither did any BMC team visit the building to screen residents.
According to protocol, at least the floor, if not the entire building, needs to be sealed.
When asked about it, an official from the ward office said, "We had taken the patient to the hospital, but no bed was available. So the family took him back home. We allowed him to be home quarantined. I do not know about why our officials have not yet sealed the floor."
When asked if it was not against protocol to keep a coronavirus-positive patient home quarantined, he said the administration will find him a bed in a hospital soon.
Newly appointed BMC Commissioner Iqbal Chahal has asked his staff to do aggressive contact tracing. 10 high- and low-risk contacts are to be traced for every positive patient. But as the number of cases rise rapidly in the island city, one of the worst hit metros in the country, several questions about the inefficient handling of the pandemic are surfacing by the day.