Gurugram doctor to PM from hospital: Please PM, make test kits available

Kriti Maroli, a Gurugram dentist, wrote her horrific story on social media living as a COVID-19 suspect in a upscale super-speciality hospital

Photo courtesy- social media
Photo courtesy- social media

NH Web Desk

Kriti recalled how she suspected herself to be infected with COVID-19. The Gurgaon dentist wrote that she showed signs of high fever, dry cough, myalgia headache along with fatigue on the night of March 18.

Kriti further wrote that due to her profession, she is exposed to aerosol due to her international patients who claim to have no travel history of any sort. Kriti went on to state that she got her blood work done which came back showing a normal WBC, lymphopenia and slightly higher CRP. She added further that she immediately went into isolation.

A doctor advised Kriti on March 21 to immediately start the medication of Clarithromycin and to get a chest x-ray done. The finding of the X-ray was then shared by Kriti with three other doctors for an opinion. Kriti Maroli got herself admitted to Medanta after being rejected twice before for her being a suspect of Coronavirus.

Soon after this, Kriti was put in a negative pressure isolation room at the hospital where her blood work was conducted once again along with sputum analysis, urine analysis and a throat swab. It was then sent to a government facility situated in Rohtak, Haryana.

Doctors had informed her that she would have to wait for two days minimum to get the results. But even after that, the results did not come back. The samples were then sent to Lalpaths.

Kriti was being treated with antibiotics, medications according to COVID-19 protocol and Oseltamivir, till until the results came back.

After some time, Kriti suffered through nausea and threw up many times due to the heavy medications.

Later, Kriti was informed that Lalpaths have a shortage of testing kits of COVID-19. Kriti continued to wait to get her test results while she was being treated for pneumonia and ended up with bruises caused by IV lines.

She went on to write that as a healthcare worker she never failed to perform her duties, but right now her life was in danger.

Kriti urge to the government to provide more kits to the private labs. “As a health care professional, I know that our country has facilities, labs ready to deal with the disaster. Our healthcare is at par with the world. But if you dont send kits in order to hide numbers, it is catastrophic for the country,” she wrote.

Here is the entire post by Kriti Maroli:

I am Dr Kriti Maroli , a dentist, an endodontist living in Gurugram. The last five days of my life have been hell and I thought I must share this for the benefit of people.

On 18th March night, I very clearly developed signs of high fever, dry cough, myalgia headache and fatigue.

I work in a profession that involves aerosol exposure( although with reasonable protection) and I might have come in contact with international patients who claimed to have no travel history.

Considering that these were clearly symptoms of Covid 19, I got blood work done the very next morning of which almost normal WBC, lymphopenia and slightly elevated CRP were the findings.

I kept myself in isolation from the rest of my family , shut my office down from the same morning itself and was on symptomatic medication ever since.

Three days later, on Saturday the 21st night I developed a fever of 103 again. My general physician advised that I not wait and start on Clarithromycin and get a chest xray done.

Since the next day was Janta curfew , I thought I might as well get the xray done the same night. I called Artemis emergency and told them that I need an Xray. Immediately the executive on call asked me what were my symptoms , to which I replied fever and cough. What I heard next was unbelievable. They said sorry you sound like a Covid suspect hence you can go to Civil hospital or RML for your xray.

The next call was to Fortis. I did manage to get an appointment for the xray in the emergency dept. I drove alone in the middle of the night with an N95 mask ( lest I infect my husband ) to the hospital and came back with an xray from the emergency after two hours ( after all the covid intial screening).

I took a screenshot of the xray and forwarded it to three of my doctor friends to ask them to read it for me before I went to sleep.

22 March 730 am two of the doctors that I sent the xray to reverted saying that my right middle lobe clearly shows pneumonia. While I was contemplating what to do next, I get a call from one of the doctors who said that she spoke to a chest physician and a radiologist. Both of them had the same thing to say:

The symptoms are suggestive of Covid, and so also the pneumonia developing within three days of the symptoms. I should get myself admitted irrespective to a hospital immediately lest it progresses into a respiratory distress. My breathing was normal.

I am grateful to certain doctor friends in my life, I did manage to get into Medanta after paperwork. I was one of their first native covid suspects with no travel history. The protocols to treat covid suspects were being established as I entered.

I was put in a negative pressure isolation room. And all my blood work was done again. Sputum analysis, in detail blood analysis, Urine analysis. An arrangement was made to collect my throat swab and send it to the govt facility in Rohtak.

Until then I was to be assumed, Covid positive, H1N1 positive, bacterial pneumonia positive and treated for all of them.

Here I had an IV line established which were to last for a couple of days , and I was put on the strongest of antibiotics, the Covid 19 protocol, and Oseltamavir.

Why a couple of days: because the sample from Medanta goes to civil hospital , from civil hospital to Rohtak and from Rohtak back to civil hospital and then to Medanta. 2 days is the minimum that I had to wait.

On that night, I experienced such side effects because of the loading dose of Covid 19 protocol , and all the other meds combined, I thought I could die from the nausea and headache rather than Covid itself. I threw up a several times and begged the nurses to inject me with antiemetics and paracetamol and thus lived the night.

Next day I was better . The exhaustion from the meds got the better of me. IV lines ended up blocking, I had to find new veins to inject more.

The day of collection was 23rd morning and three days later they tell me that Rohtak has not processed my sample!!!

I howled away until the doctor consoled me that we will resend samples again this time through Lalpaths.

My sample was collected on 26th. I was told I wont get my report until 28th.

I am told that Lalpaths too has an acute shortage of kits. Until I wait for the future course of my life I will continue with the aggressive treatment of pneumonia of any kind! There are bruises because of various IV lines. My conclusion from my experience in the last few days:

I am healthcare worker, have developed pneumonia due to a possible patient exposure and am on IV medication. The government doesnt give a damn about its doctors. What are they waiting for ? For me to die with acute respiratory distress or be put on a ventilator before they can process my sample?

All private labs are equipped and ready to take on samples, but the government is doing nothing to send them the kits.

All they have been doing is sending PR material on social media that they have mylabs that will develop a million kits. Friends all those numbers you have been asked to contact dont work. Because none have the kits. So should you die of respiratory complications , God be with you.

Mr Prime Minister , what a farce this thali bajao has turned out to be. If you are not here for your doctors by just doing a test who else will? I never hesitated to do my work for my patients , why am I being subjected to this?

Trust me , as a health care professional I know that our country has facilities, labs ready to deal with the disaster. Our healthcare is at par with the world. But if you dont send kits in order to hide numbers, it is catastrophic for the country.

I was almost asymptomatic when I developed my pneumonia. Half of the people in the country wouldnt know how they died, and 99.99 percent of the population wouldnt even have access to testing.

I hope to come alive out of this. Iam still in isolation The stigma associated with this disease is real.

Nobody wants to visit this floor. The nurses are coming to terms with what they are about to be hit. That they have no choice but to treat me. I have almost come to the end of 14 days since my symptoms.

I am grateful to the doctor at Medanta who managed to get me to the hospital, to the chest physician who treated me; both checking on me round the clock to see if Iam fine; and to the doctor who collected my throat swab .They are my real life heroes. As he pokes into my oropharnyx he has no choice but to come in contact with the aerosol which I create by the cough that is bound to happen. He did that twice since my sample was collected the second time. And i think such health care professionals deserve Paramveer chakra.

I hope not to die either from Covid or an overdose of medications. Covid positive people are lucky because they have to bear with just the side effects of Covid medications. My body is dealing with all medications above these.

I hope some lab rescues me and releases me from the hospital and just gives me my report.

My advice to people:

Dont overstress yourself with the thought of getting infected. Pls be in your state of highest physical and mental health with adequate nutrition and sanitation.

The virus will die its natural course within the body. We as a country have to fight this .

If you have a fever and cough, forget it, there is no way you can get yourself tested.

But Prime Minister , pls dont delay the supply of kits in order to hide the numbers. What is the difference then, between Communist China and democratic India? There may be thousands who may have pneumonia but no clue that they have it.

Numbers from around the world are indicating that 86 percent of the people dont survive covid after they are on the ventilator. I intend not to be one of them .

I intend to test Covid negative and get back home.!

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