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Swine flu fear haunts nursing students

Swine flu fear haunts nursing students
Highlights

The School of Nursing and the girls’ hostel of Gandhi Hospital being located on the same floor that has the swine flu isolation ward, the students there are a scared lot. “The authorities keep assuring us that the number of cases would reduce drastically as the temperature is rising. But that does not mean we might not contract H1N1,” fretted Vandana (name changed on request), a student.

Unhygienic conditions and the proximity of the girls’ hostel to the swine flu isolation ward at Gandhi Hospital pose a threat to the nursing students

The School of Nursing and the girls’ hostel of Gandhi Hospital being located on the same floor that has the swine flu isolation ward, the students there are a scared lot. “The authorities keep assuring us that the number of cases would reduce drastically as the temperature is rising. But that does not mean we might not contract H1N1,” fretted Vandana (name changed on request), a student.

Apart from the 200 girls who stay in the hostel, there are 50 day scholars who frequent the building. “It is sheer luck that no student contracted H1N1 till date. There is always the danger of contraction looming over the building,” said another student. Lack of hygiene in the isolated ward too is a cause for alarm.

Patients in the ward

Patients, as well the hospital staff, are helpless. On the condition of anonymity, a senior medical officer said, “The ward smells and the toilets are in deplorable conditions. Just by calling it an isolated ward is not enough. The authorities need to maintain cleanliness.” The nursing students have been complaining about the lack of protective gear. “We are living in perpetual fear,” a student said. On the danger of students contracting swine flu, Dr K Narasimulu, nodal officer for swine flu, said, “The very fact that there is no case till date shows that there is no need to panic. Moreover, with the temperatures rising the number of cases is coming down.”

Attendants stay put in unhygenic conditions at the ward

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