A COVID-19 patient had managed to flee away from the COVID ICU at Silchar Medical College and Hospital on Sunday. The incident creates panic among the officials and patients in the SMCH Campus. Top sources have informed that the patient, Sapan Kumar Paul requested the management to use the bathroom at 4 o' clock on Sunday morning. This gave Sapan the passage to move out of the COVID ward and walk along the streets of the SMCH campus to finally step out on the Main Road.
COVID patient Sapan Kumar Paul then calls his family members. On getting the call from Sapan, they rush to the spot. The family sits at a tea stall near SMCH and tries a lot in convincing him to move back to the COVID ward, however Sapan had different plans. He baffled his family members and escaped. The source has informed that Medical administration had immediately filed an FIR against Sapan with the local police.
Cachar Police started its investigation soon after the FIR was filed. On initial investigation and because of the cooperation from Sapan's family, the police came at an inference that he had been in the house of his in laws at Bhanga in Karimganj. Cachar Police officials forwarded the information to Karimganj Police officials, who then rescued Sapan from Bhanga. Sapan was taken to Karimganj Civil Hospital under high security. However, Karimganj Civil Hospital disagreed to admit Sapan on the basis of acutely low Oxygen level. Sapan's SpO2 level was then around 70%. Consequently, Sapan was then brought back to Silchar Medical College and Hospital under strict security on the same day.
This dramatic event has given rise to a lot of questions against SMCH's security system. Despite the medical officials being silent on the event, the question that persists is how a COVID patient can escape from the COVID ward of the hospital. Was not there any medical official or security guard in front of the COVID ward at 4 AM on Sunday, or has it always been like this? Besides, how is it possible for a patient to first move out of the COVID Ward, then take the stairs to move all the way from the third floor of the building to the ground floor, and then silently leave through the hospital entrance? Wasn't there any medical official or night guard present in the campus then?
COVID infected Sapan Kumar Paul freely roams around on roads, meets his family at a tea stall and uses public transport to travel to a different district altogether. This has created possibility of a lot of people to acquire the infection from Sapan. Whoever Sapan had come across, is in high risk of being a victim to COVID-19. This may give rise to community level transmission of the infection due to several reasons - the people who came in contact with Sapan cannot be identified, thus they cannot be tested and they may further transmit the virus. An act of lapse in the security system of SMCH can now become a reason of the infection to get transmitted from a single person to an indefinite number of people. An event of such intense risk occurs in the district and none of the officials, ranging from the Joint Director of Health to the health workers, had a hint of it. On the other hand, a source has informed that the patient, Sapan Kumar Paul, had contacted his family several times while at the ICU of SMCH, expressing that a lot of people around him are succumbing to the virus. "They are being cremated even without a meeting with the family for one last time", expressed Sapan to his family members in terror. Sapan was afraid that his family members will be unable to get even a glimpse of him, if he dies. Consequently, Sapan escaped out of the COVID ICU on Sunday.