‘Oxygen nurses’ to control use, limit waste in Maharashtra | India News
MUMBAI / NASHIK: In light of the widening gap between supply and demand for oxygen, the Maharashtra The government has decided to implement the practice of appointing an “oxygen nurse”, which is currently prevalent in the tribal-dominated Nandurbar district, statewide. The primary job of an “oxygen nurse” is to monitor its use among patients and ensure minimal waste.
The state’s medical school and government hospitals (GMCHs) will soon have dedicated oxygen nurses, said state health director Archana. Patil.
Patil told TOI that all GMCHs have been instructed to establish a dedicated team of nurses. “These nurses have to check the oxygen requirement every 2 to 4 hours, 24 hours a day. They will have the discretion to increase or decrease the flow according to the patient’s need, ”said Patil. The department has asked the GMCHs to have an oxygen nurse for about 50 patients.
The current small but effective practice of appointing oxygen nurses started last year in Nandurbar, which is 450 km from Mumbai. It has received a lot of attention and praise this year due to the significant increase in oxygen requirement among Covid patients.
Public Health Minister Rajesh Stop He said that as the state has been emphasizing the judicious use of oxygen, the concept of an oxygen nurse will ensure its effective use and reduce waste.
“Appointing an oxygen nurse is a unique and effective way to control oxygen usage and reduce oxygen waste. When patients visit the bathroom, eat, or talk on the phone, their masks are removed and oxygen is wasted. Also, when a patient’s oxygen saturation improves, its use should be reduced. An oxygen nurse investigates all this, ”said Tope.
“The concept of an oxygen nurse was not born during the second wave, but it has been in practice since last June, albeit on a smaller scale,” said Dr. Raghunath Bhoye, a civil surgeon from Nandurbar. Due to a shortage of nurses at the start of the pandemic, the idea could not be implemented to its full scale at that time.
“This year, we have managed to keep an oxygen nurse for 15-20 patients in a room with O2 support,” said the doctor. “The work is simple. They monitor patients’ oxygen saturation levels every one to two hours. If someone’s saturation is stable above 95%, the nurse can take a call to reduce the O2 supply. On the other hand, if a patient is struggling to maintain good oxygen despite receiving support, they can escalate the case, ”said Dr. Bhoye. “It also helps us avoid giving too much oxygen where it is not needed,” added the civil surgeon.
At Nandurbar Civil Hospital, where 240 patients were receiving oxygen support on Tuesday, about 15 nurses were placed exclusively to monitor intake. Dr Bhoye said the concept has already been implemented in two other sub-districts and is likely to be introduced in rural hospitals as well. The district has recorded 31,553 Covid cases and 462 deaths since March of last year. It has recently been praised for its foresight in installing two oxygen generation plants that have made it self-sufficient. Work is underway to install a third party.