Gujarat Ranks Third in IMA's List of 'Covid Martyrs' as 38 Doctors Succumb to Infection
15 doctors who died due to the disease reportedly belonged to capital city Ahmedabad while five others were from Surat. (PTI)
With 38 fatalities, Gujarat accounts for the third-highest number of coronavirus deaths among doctors in the country, after Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, says the Indian Medical Association's (IMA) list of 'Covid martyrs' released on Wednesday, September 16. However, the state ranks eighth in terms of cumulative deaths across the state which stand at 3,286 while the number of total cases have reached 1.2 lakh so far. Gujarat ranks 12th among other states in terms of total Covid-19 cases.
The IMA submitted a list of at least 382 doctors who died from Covid-19 across the country and said that they should be given the status of martyrs.
Of the 38 doctors who died due to Covid-19, the latest is a 34-year-old paediatrician who succumbed to the disease in Vapi in Valsad district, reported The Indian Express. 15 doctors who died due to the disease reportedly belonged to capital city Ahmedabad while five others were from Surat. All deceased doctors were aged between 34 and 82 years, of which 29 fall between 50-70 years of age.
All doctors who died were either general practitioners or private paediatricians, however, one among them was a 49-year-old government medical officer who died on June 22, a week after his mother succumbed to the infection. The officer, Dr Pankaj Jadav, was serving at the Amreli Civil Hospital for the last 20 years.
According to a paediatrician in Surat, Dr Ketan Shah, at first the doctors were of the opinion that those infected were only adults, however, soon they realised that children were asymptomatic carriers of the infection too. "As paediatricians, we are examining patients next to our chair and the contact time is more," he said.
Prolonged work hours for the doctors could also be one of the main reasons behind the infection, said a scientist working with the National Institute of Occupational Health. He was of the opinion that doctors should work four hours in a high viral load area and then spend the next four hours working in an area with low viral load, to prevent them from being infected.