Delhi HC directs Fortis to file genome test report of Omicron positive youth
Advocate Bharati Raju, representing the Centre, said according to the December 29 report, the youth has tested positive for Omicron and the Delhi government was managing the whole scenario.
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Friday directed Fortis Hospital to place on record the genome sequencing test report of a youth, who tested positive for COVID-19 at the international airport here upon arrival from the UK and was now not being discharged for lack of clarity on the virus variant.A vacation bench of Justice Anu Malhotra issued notice to Fortis Hospital at Vasant Kunj and...
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Friday directed Fortis Hospital to place on record the genome sequencing test report of a youth, who tested positive for COVID-19 at the international airport here upon arrival from the UK and was now not being discharged for lack of clarity on the virus variant.
A vacation bench of Justice Anu Malhotra issued notice to Fortis Hospital at Vasant Kunj and also asked it to again conduct RT-PCR test on the 18-year-old student and place the report before the roster bench on January 4.
The court further asked the hospital to supply copies of both the reports, genome sequencing and RT-PCR, to the petitioner who is mother of the patient, and the central and Delhi governments.
The court was hearing a plea of the mother seeking to know the status and outcome of the genome sequencing test carried on her son who tested positive for COVID-19 at the airport here and was not being discharged by the hospital.
Advocate Bharati Raju, representing the Centre, said according to the December 29 report, the youth has tested positive for Omicron variant and the Delhi government was managing the whole scenario. According to the guidelines, National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) provides the report to the state government which in turn has to inform the patient.
However, advocate Arun Panwar, appearing for the Delhi government, said on testing positive for COVID-19, the youth was taken from the airport to LNJP Hospital from where he took discharge against medical advice and is now admitted to the private hospital and the Delhi government was not having the genome test report which must have been directly sent to the private hospital by NCDC.
Advocate Vikram Hegde, representing the petitioner mother Archana Vaidya, said the son was shifted from LNJP Hospital to Fortis Hospital as the facilities in terms of hygiene and comfort were inadequate there and this private hospital is declared a COVID-dedicated facility by the Delhi government.
He said that it's been over a week since the youth tested positive for the virus and he should be tested again for RT-PCR and be discharged if it turns out to be negative.
On being asked by the court if the genome test report was a confidential document as it was not shared with the patient, the counsel for the Centre replied in negative.
The high court had on December 29, sought responses of the Centre and Delhi government on the woman's petition and had said while the protocols imposed by the authorities ought to be followed, the petitioner mother was entitled to know the genome test result which was not a national secret.
"They (governments) have to tell who has done the genome sequencing and when the report is going to come. The court will ensure that it comes to you (mother) and for that, we have to give them a day's time… It's your son and his genome sequencing. Why shouldn't you know it. I don't understand if there is any national secret in that," the court had earlier told the mother.
The court was earlier informed that as per its latest guidelines, samples for genome testing of the virus have to be mandatorily sent in case of positive cases at the international airport. Counsel for the petitioner had informed the court that upon the arrival at the Delhi international airport from one of the at-risk countries on December 24, the son tested positive for the virus and then a second swab was collected by the authorities for genome sequencing but no "lab reference number" was provided to enable the patients to track the report.
The petitioner, who was present in person, claimed that her son was in isolation in a private hospital since the morning of December 25 and was not being discharged to await the result of the genome sequencing test. She claimed that in spite of her son being a mild case of COVID-19, the private hospital was not re-testing him.