“RT-PCR is the gold standard in Covid-19 testing and one crore tests is a remarkable feat, the credit of which goes to the hard work put in by every single member engaged in the testing activity at our medical colleges,” said additional chief secretary, medical education department, Dr Rajneesh Dube. Mentioning that testing has been the backbone of UP’s battle against the Covid-19 pandemic undeniably, government officials said that “UP’s story of Covid-19 control in 2020 will remain incomplete without the mention of the initiatives taken by the state medical education department.”
Dr Dube was of the view that the while doctors and technicians worked tirelessly in the time of crisis, political leadership displayed by chief minister Yogi Adityanath and medical education minister Suresh Khanna will pay dividends in future too.
“In March, UP had just one lab to undertake Covid-19 testing, but today there is a high end lab at every divisional head quarter. The network comprises BSL-2 and BSL-3 labs which will continue to serve the people even after the pandemic ends,” he said, adding that both Union ministry of health and family welfare and NITI Aayog have lauded the efforts. Experts also lauded the department of medical education for thinking ‘out of the box’ to find a solution to classical problems, particularly shortage of specialists in tier-2 and tier-3 cities.
Take the example of virtual intensive care unit system in which Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences and King George’s Medical University played the role of big brother. Expertise with the two apex institutions was used to address the acute shortage of specialist doctors in the sub-regional medical colleges — both government and private — and big city hospitals.
“Followed regularly by developed countries, the model has given a template for the future,” said a senior faculty at SGPGIMS. A former director general rank officer said that UP took the lead in development of patient care and disease management protocols too.