COVID-19 Pandemic: The Way Forward – Correspondence

The editorial on “COVID-19 Pandemic: The Way Forward” by Rakesh Lodha & S K Kabra covered many important precautions to be observed both in overcrowded hospitals and private clinics in the context of present crisis [1]. We applaud the authors’ valuable suggestions covering various aspects of handling the current pandemic.

Considering the uncertainty of many aspects related to COVID-19, as the authors reiterated, physicians should adapt themselves to telemedicine. Though electronic peripherals like digital stethoscopes can be encouraged, we should not forget to document basic parameters like anthropometry, nutritional aspects and examination findings for future reference [2]. IAP’s initiative for establishing smart clinics has been automatically adapted by several of us in the current situation and should be taken up in a big way even in the post COVID era. We should also contemplate the creation of a separate authority/ facility to decide management protocols of COVID-19 patients and to guide and caution public health authorities and policy makers on future pandemics and epidemics.

Though online teaching is the current option in medical schools in this era, it is our sincere wish that it should not replace bedside teaching in future, as bedside teaching is THE pillar of the medical training. The authors have mentioned that over a period of time, health care providers will develop confidence and acceptance of COVID-19 as another infectious diseases but such statements needs caution. SARS-CoV-2 has been considered a highly transmissible virus (because of its higher replication number) that is known to cause higher case-fatality rate (CFR) than that of the pandemic influenza [3].

Since corona virus family is constantly evolving and devastating the normalcy of world, causing epidemics like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (CFR 14%–15%), Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (CFR 34.4%.) and the current pandemic, pinning the responsibility is also the need of the hour [4]. It is a high time to think about “Global Research Centers”, involving knowledgeable scientists and advanced technologies under one roof instead of replicating the same, in various corners of the world, as such an organization may give faster solutions, including vaccine production.

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