Coronavirus Pandemic: Maharashtra Police department sets up their own COVID care centre

Coronavirus Pandemic: Maharashtra Police department sets up their own COVID care centre

All frontline workers are at a greater risk of contracting Coronavirus. Maharashtra Police is no different. Owing to the increase in the number of cases among the police personnel, police units in the state have started arranging their own COVID care centres to isolate asymptomatic personnel.

These COVID care centres are being set up according to a Standard Operating procedure which has been set up by Navi Mumbai Police for quarantine centres just for the police officers, policemen and policewoman. The procedure was sent to police units across the state last week.

There is a belief that if police officials ask for priority in COVID treatment in the government-run hospitals then it may result in 'unnecessary ill-will' among the other government departments and so a separate arrangement has been made for the police force affected by the pandemic.

Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner, Sanjay Kumar told The Indian Express that they started setting up an exclusive facility for the police personnel after a police constable succumbed to the pandemic in April. The constable in question was refused admission by two government hospitals, due to lack of beds.

The Police Commissioner has already identified three buildings in the city where they could arrange for a COVID care facility for suspected and asymptomatic COVID personnel. The motive is to not overburden the already resource-strained government and private hospitals.

Currently, the make-shift three-storey COVID facility has 40 beds and is housing 26 suspected and asymptomatic policemen. Personnel who test positive have been housed on a separate floor and those who that show symptoms and are awaiting test results have been housed on another. As per reports, there has been no need to utilise the other two buildings.

The report further added that doctors from Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) carry out a daily check on patients and the policemen have been provided with a private caterer to supply food. Moreover, Kumar also stated that unlike Thane and Raigad district facilities that have been funded by its Collectors, the Navi Mumbai police has been using its welfare funds to purchase food for its quarantined personnel.

The Navi Mumbai Police has also reserved 25 beds at the D Y Patil Hospital in Nerul for personnel with serious infections

Mumbai Police, on the other hand, has set up COVID care centres last month at Police Gymkhana at Marine Drive along with buildings at the Kalina and Local Arms department complex in Marol. The buildings have been reserved for accommodation for police personnel and their families. A senior police officer told The Indian Express that they haven't sent infected police personnel to any quarantine centre run by BMC in the last 15 days.

“We have 850 beds in the three buildings. The BMC has been of great support to us in providing us with doctors and nurses to work at the centres,” he added.

Close to 59 per cent of infected policemen in Maharashtra Police are from Mumbai Police, i.e. of the total 2,560 infected personnel, Mumbai Police accounts for more than 1,500 police personnel.