Updated: November 5, 2021 7:16:19 am
The essential medical equipment procured for Covid-19 jumbo centres will be used to boost infrastructure in medical colleges and peripheral hospitals in Mumbai. With the flattening of the Covid-19 curve, the BMC has already initiated the process of transferring the equipment from a few centres.
When the Covid-19 pandemic reached its peak last April, civic and private-run hospitals were falling short of beds. So, BMC initiated three makeshift jumbo centres in National Sports Club of India (NSCI) complex in Worli, Nesco Exhibition Center in Goregaon and Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC). Subsequently, other centres were opened in Byculla, Mulund and Dahisar. Till now, over one lakh Covid-19 patients have been treated at these centres.
But now, as daily Covid-19 cases have dropped, footfall of patients has decreased drastically. For instance, in April, the 2,328-bed BKC centre treated over 1,000 Covid-19 patients. But now, on a daily basis, the centre is getting three to four patients.
Most of the beds in these centres, along with life-saving medical equipment, will be shifted to tertiary and peripheral hospitals.
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“We have two to three new hospitals in the pipeline that would be inaugurated this month in the suburbs. So, we have decided to use the extra equipment that are lying in jumbo centres at the new hospitals and the units of other medical colleges. We have already initiated the process,” said Suresh Kakani, BMC Additional Commissioner.
As per Kakani’s estimation, there are around 400 ventilators, 10,000 beds, 40 dialysis machines and 50 X-ray machines in these jumbo centres. “But the transfer would be done gradually. We will also shift the oxygen plants to peripheral hospitals but it will be done only next year if we don’t witness a third wave in the coming months,” he said.
The NESCO jumbo centre that was started on June 2, 2020, is shutting down its phase 2 unit. In all, both phases have about 2,221 beds with 123 ventilators, 206 ICU beds, 737 oxygen beds and 10 dialysis units. So far, over 24,000 patients have been treated here.
Dr Neelam Andrade, dean of the centre, said she has already sought approval to shift the excess equipment like about 100 portable ventilators, donated through the Prime Minister Fund, and 150 oxygen concentrators, among others.
“We have extra defibrillators, portable ventilators and infusion pumps among other equipment that are essential for critical care. By shifting these machines, it will not only boost infrastructure of peripheral hospitals but also control wastage,” said Dr Andrade, also the dean of Nair Dental Medical College.
Dr Vidhya Thakur, medical superintendent of Rajawadi Hospital, said that as BMC is in the process of uplifting peripheral hospitals, these machines will help fill up the gaps.
She said jumbo centres have to submit a list of equipment and amenities to the office of assistant municipal commissioner. Civic-run hospitals will then have to submit an application with their needs for the procurement process. Upon approval from BMC, the hospitals will be allowed to transport the equipment.
“I have already got the approval to procure routine beds, fans and side tables from NESCO centre (Phase 2) for the newly constructed hostels at the dental college. These will be helpful for the students,” she said.
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