The packed corridors of government hospitals are turning out to be the biggest occupational hazard for doctors on duty with many falling prey to infectious diseases. As many as 22 cases of tuberculosis have been diagnosed among junior doctors in the last two years at Osmania and other state-run hospitals including NIMS. Senior physicians point out that the incidence of tuberculosis among young doctors is becoming disturbingly prevalent over the last few years unlike earlier when hardly any doctor was diagnosed with the dreaded disease.
While no study has been conducted to gauge the magnitude of the problem faced by the healthcare professionals so far, TB prevalence among the medical fraternity is being pegged at anywhere between 10% to as high as 30% presently. While senior doctors are also affected, a chunk of the sufferers are junior doctors and nurses who are the first point of contact with patients in public sector hospitals. Doctors say not only are they precariously close to patients but the government has also failed in providing them with even face masks.