THE jumbo hospital for Covid-19 patients in Nehrunagar, which was set to open on Thursday, has been delayed by at least two days.
“Work on the hospital structure will be completed in the next two to three days. Some technical work, like installation of oxygen tank and electric issues, is pending. Once everything is in place, we will start the jumbo hospital,” Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar told The Indian Express.
The 800-bed hospital is being set up through the joint efforts of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC), Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC), PMRDA and the District Collectorate at a cost of Rs 70 crore. The hospital is coming up at the space earlier occupied by the Annasaheb Magar stadium, which had been demolished by the PCMC to develop a new stadium. The cost of the hospital will be borne by the PCMC, PMC and the PMRDA.
Of the hospital’s 800 beds, at least 150 will be ventilator beds, while there will be a separate intensive care unit. “The hospital will take load off the YCM Hospital and cater to the rising demand for ventilator beds,” said Hardikar.
The YCM Hospital has 90 beds in the ICU of which 50 are ventilator beds. Before being declared a Covid hospital, it was catering to non-Covid patients from Khadki and Dehu Road cantonments, Pune and Pimpri-Chinchwad, as well as from neighbouring talukas of Maval, Mulshi, Khed and Junnar. Sassoon is the only other government-run hospital with capacity of more than 500 beds.
Besides Niramaya Hospital, no other major hospital in Pimpri-Chinchwad is offering treatment for non-Covid patients. “After the jumbo hospital starts functioning, we will be in a position to treat non-Covid patients at YCM Hospital. Many poor patients had to postpone their surgeries there as it has become a Covid hospital,” Hardikar said.
Meanwhile, Pimpri-Chinchwad is witnessing at least 900-1,000 positive cases every day, the PCMC said. “We are currently witnessing our peak period as cases are surging. Of the total samples, we are getting 25-27 per cent positivity. We expect positive cases to start going down from September,” he said.
Hardikar said the strict implementation of Ganesh festival norms and testing of super spreaders like hawkers and shopkeepers will help in reducing the number of cases. “We are strictly implementing the norms for Ganesh mandals. Not a single Ganesh mandal has sought permission to set up a pandal. This will help prevent gatherings and keep the virus at bay,” he said.
The PCMC administration, besides conducting tests in containment areas for co-morbid patients, is also tracking and monitoring co-morbid patients outside containment zones. “We are continuing our focus on co-morbid patients, which will help in reducing mortalities,” Hardikar said.
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