Physician in Telangana dies of COVID-19, first doctor in state to succumb to disease

Dr Gnaneshwar Rao, a physician from Khairatabad, had tested positive for the virus two days ago and had been admitted to Gandhi Hospital.
Dr Gnaneshwar Rao
Dr Gnaneshwar Rao
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A 65-year-old general physician from Telangana died after contracting SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19. He is the first doctor to succumb to COVID-19 in the state, and was a member of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) in Hyderabad.

Dr Gnaneshwar Rao, a physician who practiced in Khairatabad, was admitted to KIMS Hospital in Secunderabad on June 16 with a high fever. His samples were taken and sent for testing. His results returned positive for SARS-CoV-2, following which he was diagnosed to have COVID-19. He also had hypertension and was on medication for the same. He was subsequently shifted to Gandhi Hospital in Hyderabad on June 20.

Two days after he was admitted to Gandhi Hospital, his condition began to worsen and he passed away on Sunday evening at around 8 pm, as per hospital officials. While several other doctors have been found to have COVID-19, Dr Rao is the first to have lost his life to the disease.

“Doctors, nurses and other medical staff are at the frontline of the pandemic and are constantly under the threat of contracting the virus. This is why it is important that testing measures are increased and made mandatory for those who are working in hospitals and that the appropriate protective equipment be given to keep them safe,” says Dr Arjun, Joint Secretary of the IMA in Hyderabad.

Earlier in the month, the Telangana High Court had pulled up the state government for not increasing testing measures and providing personal protective equipment (PPE) to the staff concerned. This, especially considering the increase in the number of doctors and other medical staff testing positive for coronavirus in the state.

Several complaints had also been raised at Osmania General Hospital after around 50 postgraduate students had fallen sick after being exposed to patients suspected to have COVID-19. Shortly after this, testing measures were increased at the hospital for staff.

As of Monday, there have been a total of 7,802 individuals who have fallen sick with COVID-19 in Telangana, with a total of 210 people having succumbed to the disease.

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