May 26, 2021 10:46:00 am
With daily Covid cases having gone down by over 47 per cent in Punjab in the past two weeks, occupancy of level 3 (L-3) beds — which are for patients who require huge amounts of oxygen supply with normative rate being 24 litres per minute — in hospitals has witnessed a 12.6 per cent drop in the same period.
L3 facilites are currently using around 48 per cent of the total oxygen requirement for Covid patients in the state.
Health department officials said that on May 11, there were 2,760 patients in Covid L-3 facilities which included 2,607 Covid patients and 153 Covid-suspect patients. The number has come down to 2,413 — 2,273 Covid patients and 140 Covid-suspected patients on May 24 — a 12.6 per cent drop in the past two weeks.
During the same time, the positivity of the state has come down drastically. A total of 8,668 cases were detected on May 11, with the state’s positivity rate now at 15.03 per cent. The cases came down to 4,539 on May 24, with the positivity rate dropping to 6.51 per cent. Testing capacity has been increased by over 20 per cent in the state in past two weeks. On May 11, 57,675 tests were conducted against 69,713 on May 24.
Health officials said the positivity has decreased in the state to a great extent in the past two weeks but the severity level has not come down at the same rate and people are battling for life in the Covid L-3 facility where over 1,000 patients were still in critical condition as of Monday.
Seven districts out of 23 are handling maximum load of L-3 patients of the state. These districts — Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Mohali, Bathinda, Patiala and Faridkot — are also taking care of L-3 patients of other districts which don’t have L-3 facility.
Out of 2,760 patients in L-3 facility on May 11, 2,659 patients were admitted in L-3 in these seven districts. These districts are handling 96.3 per cent of the total L-3 patients of the state.
On May 24, out of 2,413 patients in L-3, 2,304 (95.4 per cent) were admitted in L-3 facilities of these seven districts only.
Dr Rajesh Bhaskar, nodal officer for Covid, Punjab, said there is a huge fall in daily cases in the past few days but the L-3 occupancy is still high as compared to the fall in the positivity rate. “It can also be reduced if the people get alerted immediately if they see any Covid-like symptoms among them instead of waiting for a long time which will put their lives at risk,” he added.
Another senior doctor said that it seems that the state has passed the peak of the second deadly wave but still it is difficult to say anything currently and state health officials are observing the situation.
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