COVID ICUs Not For Docs at 60, Need Young Experts: Dr Devi Shetty

Watch Charcha 2020 session 'Building Resilient Health Systems' amid COVID-19 here.

2 min read

As India grapples with COVID-19 and its dangerous repercussions on the health care system, the ability to reinvent and realign healthcare strategies is more critical than ever before.

Further, while COVID-19 overwhelms the entire health system, vulnerable groups with non-COVID-19 health issues face the brunt. How can we mitigate the impact on them and ensure access to healthcare for them?

In a 3-day panel discussion by The Nudge Foundation, Charcha 2020 from 14 May to 16 May - Experts discussed 'Building Resilient Health Systems' amid COVID-19.

Dr Devi Shetty, Chairman & Founder of Narayana Health in a session on Friday, 15 May said facilities are not an issue in the country in order to fight COVID-19, the need of the hour is, infact, "to identify skilled manpower".

"Our whole strategy now should not be about the lockdown and its impact. Let's assume that a large number of people will be infected so the strategy should be about saving lives. Our front line attack should be at the district level", he adds.

"We need to have young specialist doctors who are comfortable in intubating patients, adjusting ventilators and managing low cardiac outputs. Unfortunately, we do not have enough people with this kind of expertise at the district level. So we need to relook at our manpower requirement", Dr Shetty added.

He also said that COVID-19 ICUs are not the best for doctors of age past 60. Young experts need to be identified, he added.

There are many on-ground challenges of facing a pandemic for administrators. How these forefront warriors navigate through COVID-19 and, minimize its impact on the vulnerable groups using limited resources?

On 14 May, policymakers discussed responses to COVID-19 such as trying to build resilient systems and rethinking health financing. Watch Dr Srinath Reddy, President PHFI and Nachiket Mor, Visiting Scientist discuss the details here:

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