Coronavirus in Mumbai: JJ Hospital staff gets protective ‘kawach’ to beat COVID-19

Mumbai: To ensure the hospital staff of the Sir Jamshedji Jeejeebhoy Hospital does not get infected, doctors from the surgery department have designed a patient transportation chamber which has been named as ‘Covid Kawach’.

Dean of the hospital said, this chamber will help them curb the spread of infection and it is made in association with the engineers of Kalbadevi-based Indomed Devices.

Dr Ajay Bhandarwaj, head of the surgery department at the hospital, said it is the first of its kind chamber which has negative and positive pressure mode of transportation to reduce the spread of the virus amongst the medical staffers during the shifting process. “When a Covid patient is shifted from one ward to another or transported to undergo CT scan, at that time the chances of getting infected are high. This kawach will be used as a barrier between the patient and staff,” he said.

A senior doctor claimed that this chamber is cost-effective and can be easily assembled. Moreover, it contains a HEPA filter at the head end which filters out particles as small as 0.02 microns. “The negative suction chamber helps remove the infected aerosols released by the patient and releases a filtered air out of the chamber. The air sealed chamber prevents any leakage of air from within the chamber. It will help to transport of non-Covid patients with compromised immunity to different departments,” said a doctor.

At present, only one such prototype transportation chamber has been started at the hospital since Friday. Soon, it will be installed at two other government-run hospitals— St George and GT Hospital. Each of them will cost around Rs 40,000.

“To minimise the cross-infection and spread during transport of Covid patient, an air-sealed chamber was required. Filtered air would need to be circulated within and released from the chamber. Even though they wear PPE, it is extremely risky for them. But as this chamber does not let viruses to spread out, there is no need to wear PPE,” said Dr Bhandarwaj.

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