Severity Test: BEST way to detect infected staff
File photo

Prashant Shinde (30) is a bus conductor with the Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST). Since the pandemic outbreak, his marriage was postponed twice. With high hopes, Shinde's family was waiting for September 20 - the rescheduled wedding day, but a week prior to the day, Shinde was tested positive and had to be quarantined.

Another BEST employee, Ankush Naik (56), didn't have any symptoms, but on the insistence of BEST medical staffers, he underwent Covid test and was tested positive, following which he was admitted to a hospital and recovered after a 42 days battle.

The medical team was able to detect the deteriorating health conditions of the patients in advance by conducting a 'Severity Test' on them. As the cases are yet again rising in the maximum city, BEST, as a proactive measure, has launched this unique way of health monitoring, where members of the medical team routinely call the frontline staffers and ask them questions about their health.

"We have prepared a questionnaire based on age, comorbidities and symptoms. The employees are asked to answer them over tele or video conference and we tick the boxes, analysing their answers we decide on whether they are fit or not," BEST, Chief Medical Officer Dr Anil Kumar Singhal told FPJ.

Those who score between 0-3 are advised home quarantine, patients with 4-6 scores are advised to complete isolation, while the ones who score more than 13 are compulsorily admitted to hospitals.

BEST CMO said that cases like that of Ankush Naik are an example of the effectiveness of the test. In the last six months, more than 1935 BEST employees were successfully diagnosed with Covid-19 and the recovery rate of the employees has risen to 90 per cent.

"This test helps us to detect if anyone is infected long before symptoms start which gives us enough time for treatment. The reason why the recovery rate of BEST employees is so high is because of this unique test," Singhal stated.

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Free Press Journal