Delhi based ENT surgeon Dr. Anand Varma filed a writ petition before the Delhi High Court; under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution. The petition sought directions to ensure the COVID screening of the patients before they undergo surgeries. Being that, All India Institute of Medical Sciences informed the court that it is mandatory to conduct the COVID-19 test from an Indian Council of Medical Research authorized laboratory; in cases of urgent surgeries. Such COVID screening is essential to analyze their health conditions, and also to contain the spread of COVID-19. However, the government guidelines defer such medical intervention in cases of elective surgeries.
The Central government and the Delhi Government contended that the order dated June 3, 2020, allows elective surgeries because they are in the nature of the emergency. Being that, the government considers it prudent to postpone other procedures; to the extent the spread of pandemic is manageable. Moreover, testing labs stand augmented; private hospitals have permission to conduct the COVID-19 tests. In light of the above submissions, the court opined that the patients should be screened for the COVID-19 test; before undergoing surgery be it elective or urgent. The order was passed on June 18, 2020. Thus, the petition was disposed of.