Around 100 Khyber Pakhtunkhwa private hospitals have reserved a total of 387 beds on request by the health department in an effort to address threats posed by the outbreak of the latest coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
“We are thankful to the administrations of 98 private hospitals across the province for allocating beds for the suspected coronavirus cases. We’ve issued guidelines to them for the management of suspects,” provincial director-general (health) Dr Tahir Nadim Khan told Dawn.
The DG said focal persons had been nominated for all districts, while beds had been reserved for suspected cases.
He said seven suspected cases had so far been reported in the province.
Dr Tahir said five of those cases were sent home after they tested negative for the disease, while the remaining two were being managed in Swat and Swabi hospitals as the results of their lab tests were awaited.
He said after a health emergency was declared in the province under the KP Public Health (Surveillance and Response) Act, 2017, over the fears of the outbreak of the 2019-nCoV, the department had taken all necessary measures to address the issue.
“We are the only province to allocate beds for suspected coronavirus patients in private hospitals. The KP Health Care Commission has directed all private healthcare establishments throughout the province to establish isolation rooms in their respective centers,” he said.
Dr Tahir said the department had deputed 31 staff members, including doctors, both men and women, nurses, paramedics, data entry persons and drivers, to facilitate the working of the central health establishment of the federal government at the Bacha Khan International Airport, Peshawar.
The official said the people with nausea, tiredness, headache, fever, chest pain, generalised body ache and flu-like symptoms should be subjected to screening to exclude 2019-nCoV as a cause.
Dr Tahir said the department had made elaborate arrangements to filter all people coming out of the airport and take their samples for examination by the National Institute of Health, Islamabad.
“In case of any confirmed case of 2019-nCoV, we have planned to carry out the screening of the people, who travelled with him or her in the aeroplane, especially those sitting near them,” he said.