Even as cases in Maharashtra rose to 29,100 on Friday, or one-third of the country’s burden, health officials said there was a slight improvement in the doubling rate. From 10 days, cases are now doubling in 11 days. Mumbai, with maximum cases in India, has 17,671 Covid-19 cases. It recorded 933 fresh cases on Friday. The city is close to reporting over 1,000 cases a day, officials said.
Mumbai took two months to record the first 7,061 cases. In only 15 days of May, it recorded over 10,000 cases. Maharashtra now has a total of 29,100 cases with 1,068 deaths while Mumbai has 17,371 cases with 655 deaths.
With cases increasing rapidly and public hospitals already working to their full capacity, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Friday directed private hospitals to reserve 60 per cent beds for Covid-19 patients.
“Currently, private hospitals have reserved less than 25 per cent beds for patients. They are treating emergency cases like delivery, heart ailment, stroke, accident and dialysis. We have asked them to reserve 60 per cent beds for Covid-19 patients,” Tope said in a statement.
He indicated that the state government is mulling paying private hospitals for treating coronavirus patients, although he did not elaborate as a decision on this remains pending.
Of the 17,671 cases in Mumbai, about 70 per cent remain asymptomatic, while 27 per cent are moderately symptomatic and 3 per cent critical. By next week, a 1,008-bed facility is slated to begin in Bandra Kurla Complex for moderately and mildly ill Covid-19 patients. Work to start another 500-bed ICU unit in BKC is underway for those who require oxygen support. Work in JJ hospital premises to start a 500-bed facility for moderately ill patients is underway. A 1,000-bed facility is ready in NESCO, Goregaon. The government is also going to open more jumbo facilities in Worli Dairy area, Dahisar, Nehru planetarium, and Mulund.
“We can quarantine at least one lakh people in Covid care centres as on today. We have enough beds for asymptomatic and mildly ill patients. We need more beds for moderately ill and critically ill Covid-19 patients,” Tope said.
Two meetings have been held this week, including one with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, to discuss how private hospitals can participate in treating Covid-19 patients. Of 34 deaths reported in Mumbai, civic officials said 10 deaths were recorded between May 10 and May 12.
Across state there were 49 deaths. There were six deaths in Pune, two in Akola, two in Kalyan-Dombivali, two in Dhule, and one each in Panvel, Jalgaon, and Aurangabad. At least 1,473 containment zones are active where hotspots have been detected, and 3.29 lakh people remain in either home quarantine or institutional quarantine.