Amid rising coronavirus cases, AIIMS Director travels to Gujarat at Amit Shah's behest

The novel coronavirus outbreak has wreaked havoc, forcing people to stay home and businesses to stay shut. The total number of cases recorded in the country has now crossed 59,600, and 1,981 people have passed away.

On Saturday, All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) chief, Dr. Randeep Guleria travelled to Gujarat to visit a hospital in Ahmedabad and interacted with doctors. According to an NDTV report, Guleria took a special Air Force flight to the state at Home Minister Amit Shah's instructions. The publication quoted sources at the Home Ministry to say that the AIIMS Director had taken a special flight on Friday evening based on Shah's instructions.

In recent times, Gujarat has seen a rising number of coronavirus cases. According to data provided on the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare's website, the state has recorded 7,402 positive cases, with a rather high death rate. As of Saturday afternoon, 449 people have died, while 1872 have recovered from the virus.

"A stigma is still attached to COVID-19. Many people fear to come to hospital and get a test done. An issue that this causes is that if a person is positive and there is delay in his admission to a hospital, then it increases mortality," Guleria was quoted as saying in Ahmedabad.

News agency ANI quoted him to add that those facing the highest risk of getting severe COVID-19 infection were the elderly, and those with co-morbidity issues.

"If you have elderly people at home you need to be extra cautious.Get health checkup done immediately after observing mild symptoms," the AIIMS Director urged.

Guleria who is incidentally a pulmonologist was reportedly accompanied on the visit by Dr Manish Sureja, from the AIIMS department of medicine. The doctors are also slated to visit SVP Hospital in Ahmedabad.

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