In the continuing surge in COVID-19 cases, Telangana on Friday reported nine deaths and 164 new infections. The new positive cases from the state include a Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) legislator from Warangal district and the personal assistant to T Harish Rao, the state Finance Minister who is under a 2-week quarantine.
Telangana's Finance Minister Harish Rao went into quarantine after his personal assistant (PA) tested positive for coronavirus on Thursday, reported The New Indian Express. The minister last met with his PA five days ago, and 16 others have also been quarantined for two weeks after coming in contact with the ministerâ€™s PA.
The fresh fatalities reported on Friday pushed the death toll in the state to 174 while the tally of COVID-19 positive cases mounted to 4,484.
According to the director of public health and family welfare, out of 164 new cases, 133 were reported from Greater Hyderabad, the worst-affected among all 33 districts. The remaining cases were reported from 13 districts.
The number of patients undergoing treatment in hospitals was 2,032 while 2,278 have so far been discharged after recovery.
Some of the positive cases reported on Friday include the Kondapur area hospital superintendent along with a doctor from an Urban Primary Health Centre (UPHC) and her husband.
One doctor from the Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) and six doctors at Osmania Medical College have tested positive. Two junior doctors, a PG neurosurgery student, one plastic surgeon and two interns tested positive for the coronavirus on Friday, reported ToI.
So far, 64 doctors from Osmania and five from Gandhi Hospital have tested positive.
Four employees of the ESIC hospital in Sanathnagar also tested positive and the reports of six others are awaited. The hospital has quarantined 70 of its staff.
Some of the other reported positive cases include a pregnant woman and her husband from Saroornagar. She is suspected to have contracted the disease during a routine hospital check-up at a private hospital. A cancer patient from Warangal also tested positive along with a youth from Nalgonda who is suspected to have contracted the disease while visiting his father at NIMS.
Meanwhile, the Greater Hyderabad Mayor Bonthu Rammohan underwent Covid-19 test on Friday, a day after his driver tested positive for the virus. The Mayor on Thursday went into self-quarantine for the next two weeks.
The driver was found positive after tests were conducted on employees working in the Mayor's chambers in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) office, following an employee testing positive. A total of three GHMC staffers have tested positive for the virus.
Meanwhile, the junior doctors at Gandhi Hospital, Telangana's exclusive facility to treat COVID-19 patients, on Friday called off the strike on the condition that the state government addresses their demands in 15 days.
Over 300 junior doctors were on strike since Tuesday night after one of their colleagues on duty was assaulted by relatives of a patient, who had succumbed to COVID-19.
They had decided to boycott the duties till the government accepted their demands including resuming non-COVID healthcare services at Gandhi Hospital and decentralisation of management of SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Infection) and COVID-19 positive cases.
Telangana Junior Doctors' Association (JUDA) also demanded the recruitment of doctors and nurses and deployment of Special Protection Force (SPF) at all government hospitals.
The two rounds of talks between JUDA and Health Minister Etela Rajender had failed to resolve the issue. However, following the assurances given by the minister late Thursday, the medicos decided to end the strike.
"Taking public health into consideration especially in view of the pandemic we are fighting and trusting the Health Minister's reassuring words, JUDA has decided to conditionally call off the strike and resume duties with immediate effect," they said.
JUDA said that the minister should personally address their demands so that they don't have to boycott their duties again.