A Delhi government panel has suggested that Pragati Maidan, Talkatora Indoor Stadium, Thyagaraj Indoor Stadium, Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and Dhyanchand National Stadium be used as makeshift hospitals.
Until Monday night, the capital had recorded 1,007 Covid cases and 62 deaths. The Delhi government, in a first, did not release the daily health bulletin on Tuesday.
The panel, headed by Divisional Commissioner Sanjeev Khirwar, shared its recommendations with L-G Anil Baijal at the meeting of the Disaster Management Authority. DDMA was also told about a plan to arrange beds at hotels, with prices capped at Rs 10,000 per day.
The suggestion assumes significance in light of the government’s projection that cases in Delhi may cross 5 lakh by the end of July, for which at least 80,000 beds will be required. Delhi, which has 17,712 active cases, currently has 8,975 Covid beds in government, private hospitals.
The number of beds is likely to increase by around 2,000 by June 15, the L-G was informed. The bed capacity will increase with the plan to operationalise a new 450-bed hospital at Burari and attachment of premier hotels with existing Covid-dedicated hospitals, officials said.
Baijal directed the panel to ramp up medical infrastructure “fast”, the L-G House said in a statement. However, he also reminded officials that projections for augmentation of infrastructure should be “realistic”.
The Health Department told the L-G that the case fatality rate (proportion of deaths among confirmed cases) in Delhi is 2.92% as compared to the national average of 2.81%, while recovery rate stands at 38%. Cases are doubling every 12.6 days.
Out of the total number of hospital beds, those with ventilator support for critical patients is 468, apart from 582 ICU beds. Oxygen support is attached with 3,590 beds, the L-G was told.
The L-G is also learnt to have advised local administrative officials to “take lessons” from best practices in Mumbai, Chennai and Bengaluru.
Meanwhile, the Delhi government asked 22 private hospitals in the city to reserve 20% more beds for Covid-19 patients, expanding the bed strength in these hospitals by 2,015. With a total bed capacity of 7,323 beds, these hospitals had earlier reserved 1,441 beds for patients.
“The decision has been taken in consultation with the 22 private hospitals. They will have to allocate and update the revised information on ‘Delhi Corona’ app with at the earliest. A total of 3,456 beds have been added to the existing capacity,” said a senior health department official.
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