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Friday, April 23, 2021

Pune: Infected patients in March 2021 accounts for 25% of total infected till date

Pune also registered 447 deaths due to coronavirus last month.

Written by Ajay Jadhav | Pune |
Updated: April 1, 2021 9:02:50 pm
Pune xovid cases, Pune city news, Covid-19, Pune covid cases surge, Pune infections, Indian expressDuring the Covid-19 lockdown in Pune in March 2020. (Express Photo: Ashish Kale, File)

The health infrastructure in the city has never before been under such stress as it is now due to the ongoing Covid-19 surge which accounts for around 25 per cent (66,641 new patients) of the total infected patients since the outbreak, in just one month of March this year. The city also registered 447 deaths due to coronavirus last month.

The Covid-19 infections had first witnessed peak in September last year after which the slowdown continued till January this year. However, the situation began to change in the first week of February and has been worsening since then due to the rapid increase in infections among people.

The spread was slow initially in the month of February with only 16,710 getting infected to the coronavirus between February 1 to 28. The growth has been around four times in the previous month. The progressive patient count was 2,02,702 on February 28 while it was 2,69,343 on March 31. “The number of infected in March accounts for 24.74 per cent infected in the city since the outbreak. Thus, it has put pressure on the health infrastructure as all the predictions of the civic administration of a possible second wave have fallen flat,” said a civic officer.

Based on the previous peak of 17,781 active cases, the PMC had anticipated a second wave at 19,560 active patients, 1.10 times of the previous peak, but the active cases have reached 33,858 as the city continues to witness high daily positivity rate.

On the contrary, the number of patients cured of viral infections are 36,840 in March and accounts for 16 per cent of the total cured so far. “The only respite is that the case fatality rate is less as compared to that in the past. The number of deaths is high at 447 in a month but the rate is less compared to the total infected,” he said.

The high active case count has caught the civic administration’s unawares as it is struggling to carry out bed management. The PMC had to restart the jumbo hospital in CoEP grounds and direct the private hospitals to reserve 80 per cent beds for treatment of only Covid patients. This despite 85 per cent of total active patients are presently in home isolation.

As on April 1 morning, the city has no ventilator beds available with all 469 allocated beds occupied while only two of the 360 ICU beds without ventilators are available for Covid patients. The availability of Oxygen beds is also decreasing with an increasing number of critical patients.

The PMC has also started to set up Covid Care Centres (CCC) in various parts of the city to keep asymptomatic or those with mild symptoms in institutional isolation as was done in the past. “We would be increasing the capacity of CCC to accommodate 5,000 patients with mild or no symptoms. This will be done to isolate them and contain the further spread of viral infection,” said mayor Murlidhar Mohol.

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