Delaying treatment due to the fear of COVID-19 can put lives at risk

12 Jun,20

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the picture of healthcare upside down in the last 3-4 months. Doctors and hospitals were getting prepared to deal with a significant rise in the number of COVID patients along with regular patients, but what they did not expect, was a sharp decline in everyday cases for other medical conditions or needs. While the patients who are infected with COVID-19 are increasing, everyday healthcare seekers are choosing to delay their treatment for now. 

Outpatient departments are witnessing a drastic reduction in the number of patients, especially during this flu season, with changes in weather, when usually there is a large inflow of people who are unwell. This brings us to the question: Did this city just get healthy suddenly and the state of patient’s conditions improve magically? No, that is definitely not the answer. The answer is that the fear of COVID-19 and the stigma of getting infected if you visit hospitals; is shaping a patient’s access to care even after nearly 3 months of living with this pandemic. 

DELAYING MEDICAL CARE HAS ITS OWN DRAWBACK!

If patients are going to delay getting treated any longer, it could cost them a lot of time, efforts & money as well in the longer run. If this continues, patients with acute and chronic conditions can become prone to even worst health conditions. The key to stay healthy lies with early diagnosis, timely treatment & thorough post-operative rehabilitation or care. This healthcare cycle can only start when a patient comes to consult with a doctor on time, without delaying their treatment.

Here are a few explanations for why accessing healthcare in many cases is important:

  • If a diabetic patient gets an infection or a cut but delays treatment for a longer time then it could lead the infection to get closer to the bone. The worst case scenario could even be amputation of that specific body part.

  • Hernia, kidney or gallbladder stone surgeries can be delayed for a few days or weeks but if delayed for a longer time then that could result in more severe health concerns. 

  • Appendicitis, if treated early then the patient usually undergoes laparoscopic surgery. But if the surgery is delayed for a prolonged period, it may result in an abscess formation, which needs a more complex surgery. Even in the worst cases, the appendix may burst and lead to a severe medical emergency.

  • Cardiac surgeries are always planned in advance for angiography or stenting. But this does not mean that these surgeries can be delayed for months as the result could be fatal.

  • Patients whose cancer has been detected at an early stage can get treated, leading to better outcomes & results.

Studies have shown that, in the last three months of the coronavirus outbreak, around 5,05,800 non-emergency surgeries, 27,700 obstetric surgeries and 51,100 cancer surgeries have been delayed across India. Delaying the treatment is no solution as the ultimate cost can be loss of life. 

HOSPITAL EXPERIENCE:

We all need to understand that COVID-19 is not going to end anytime soon and neither can your treatment wait forever. If you need any healthcare assistance, you must consult with a specialist without any delay. 

At Sarvodaya Healthcare, Faridabad, we understand that while the world is paused, your treatment can’t wait. We have taken several measures to ensure that the patients who visit our hospitals are safe. This includes: A Separate, Dedicated, Sterile Block for Surgical Patients, Separate Isolation Wards for Suspected COVID-19 patients, Enforcing Strict Social Distancing Norms, Restriction of Visitors, Regular Sanitisation of Premises, PPE for staff, Thermal Screening of every person entering the hospital, Separate Flu Corner outside the hospital & much more.

We are also maintaining scheduled necessary check-ups for our staff to ensure complete safety for you. We have also initiated teleconsulting and video consultation for those who need medical advice for less severe or urgent healthcare conditions.

We remain committed to assuring that all our patients get the essential medical care on time and also urge people to not delay their hospital visits or consultations with experts. We are maintaining a safe & sterile environment for all your treatments.