Mumbai: A 15-bedded ward for children with mild to moderate measles infection will open at civic-run Shivaji Nagar maternity home, which is close to the worst measles outbreak hotspot of Rafiq Nagar, in the next couple of days.
“We will have resident doctors from KEM Hospital, Parel, as well as some doctors on contract. We will also have nurses from Kasturba Hospital, Chinchpokli, to manage the ward,’’ said BMC executive health officer Dr Mangala Gomare. The ward will be overseen by Dr Chandrakant Pawar, who is the medical superintendent of Kasturba Hospital, which is BMC’s infectious diseases hospital.
Measles patients cannot be kept with regular patients, given how infectious the viral disease is. Hence, the BMC earmarked five beds in Rajawadi Hospital in Ghatkopar, 10 beds in Shatabdi Hospital in Govandi and 83 beds in Kasturba Hospital to manage the ongoing outbreak of the disease.
During the visit of the central government team to Govandi, the residents had complained about the lack of health infrastructure and wanted the municipal corporation to upgrade its existing urban health centre in Shivaji Nagar. The BMC has stepped up house-to-house surveys and vaccinations in a bid to control the situation.
For the last two days, around 15 to 20 medical interns from KEM Hospital, Parel, have been posted in Shivaji Nagar to help out with the surveillance and extra vaccination drives. The plan is to vaccinate about 800 children every day in M East alone. BMC’s malaria staff too has been roped in to help out with the door-to-door surveillance for children with fever and rash.
The BMC has also appointed four “conversion officers”, said Dr Gomare, who are social workers assigned the task of trying to convert parents resistant to vaccinating their children. “One of these conversion officers has been posted in Rafiq Nagar,’’ she added.