March 29, 2021 8:47:02 pm
With the city likely to face shortage of beds for treatment of critical Covid-19 patients, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has decided to revert to its earlier strategy of reserving 80 per cent of beds in private hospitals for treatment of Covid-19 patients.
“The number of Covid-19 patients in the city is rapidly increasing… in September and October last year, patients had to struggle to find available beds. The situation is similar now… reports of various government and private agencies have indicated that the number of Covid-19 patients is likely to increase in large numbers in coming days…,” said Municipal Commissioner Vikram Kumar on Monday.
He said, “The state Health department had directed private hospitals to provide 80 per cent of their total beds for treatment of Covid-19 patients. Accordingly, private hospitals in the city should make available 80 per cent of their operational beds for Covid-19 patients within the next two days, by March 31”.
While the civic administration had earlier claimed that it had enough beds to handle the second wave of the infection, it has started feeling the heat due to the rising graph of active cases.
In a communication to all major private hospitals in the city, the municipal commissioner said the hospitals should shift all their non-Covid patients to the remaining 20 per cent beds. “The hospitals should start treatment of Covid-19 patients on the 80 per cent reserved beds. Beds of all categories — isolation, oxygen, ICU without ventilator, ICU with ventilator — should be made activated for Covid-19 patients without delay,” he said.
In accordance with an order by the state government in May last year, the PMC had asked private hospitals to reserve 80 per cent beds for Covid-19 patients. But once the number of cases started falling, it had allowed private hospitals to use the reserved beds for non-Covid patients in November last year, on the condition that the reserved beds would be made available again in case there is surge in patients.
According to the PMC daily report released on Monday morning, other than Covid care centres, there are only 10 ventilator beds, 20 ICU beds without ventilators, 201 oxygen beds and 242 other beds vacant of the total 4,978 beds available in city hospitals.
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