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Arrest order for coronavirus suspect in Punjab after he refuses treatment

Arrest orders were issued against a patient showing coronavirus-like symptoms in Punjab as a "preventive measure" after he refused to stay in the isolation ward.

A 38-year old man who displayed symptoms of coronavirus was issued an arrest order by the District Magistrate of Punjab after he refused to stay in the isolation ward of the hospital.

The Deputy Commissioner cum District Magistrate of Faridkot in Punjab issued formal orders directing the police chief to intervene and arrest the patient if he showed any resistance to be isolated in the ward designated for suspected coronavirus patients.

If the man continues to refuse the medical help, he will become the first to get arrested for resisting the medical protocol to quarantine suspected cases in the isolation ward. The patient, whose name is being withheld, finally relented to escape arrest. He had returned from Canada to his house in Punjab Kotkapura about a week ago. On his return journey, the person stopped over at Shanghai for 9-hours.

He turned up in the hospital in Kotkapura with symptoms like coronavirus. While his blood sample was immediately taken, he began throwing tantrums towards staying in the isolation ward. Taking serious note, the written order of the district magistrate to the SSP Faridkot (a copy with DH) states, “In case there is any resistance, the person shall be immediately arrested and kept in isolation guarded by the police.”

The patient paid no heed to the medical protocol and returned home, prompting the civil surgeon to seek the intervention of the district magistrate. The suspected patient’s uninhibited movement could have been a serious risk to life for others in the event of his reports confirming the presence of coronavirus.

Sensing the fear and chaos among the medical professionals and residents, a police team was sent to the person house. He was later escorted by the police to the isolation ward in the hospital where he is currently under observation. Since the patient finally acceded to stay in the isolation ward, his arrest was not made. Another similar case has come up in Haryana’s Panchkula where a person who had returned from China has declined to stay in the isolation ward, besides refusing to give his blood sample. Health authorities said, in this case, medical teams were regularly visiting the person who so far has not shown any symptoms.

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