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Friday, April 23, 2021

Covid-19 cases: Pune running out of beds for critical patients

Pune district now has more than 81,000 active patients, only a shade lower than the peak of about 82,000 that was reached in September last year.

Written by Ajay Jadhav , Atikh Rashid , Manoj Dattatrye More | Pune |
Updated: April 7, 2021 6:10:38 am
Pune, Covid-19A woman gets vaccinated against Covid-19 in Pune. (Express photo by Pavan Khengre)

As Pune continued to report the highest coronavirus numbers in the country, with more than 11,000 new cases detected on Tuesday, there was acute shortage of ICUs and ventilators in the city. In the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) areas, there were no empty ICU beds with ventilators on Tuesday morning. The administration tried to salvage the situation throughout the day and managed to set up 20 new ICUs, but these too were filled up by evening.

As on Tuesday evening, only one ICU bed with ventilator, and nine other ICU beds, were available for patients.

At around 9 pm on Tuesday, the PMC dashboard was showing 12 ventilator beds and 12 ICU beds for Covid-19 patients in its facilities. But in another couple of hours, the majority of these beds were taken as the number of Covid-19 cases continued to surge.

However, several private hospitals in the city are yet to reserve 80 per cent of their beds for Covid-19 patients, the deadline for which was on March 31.

“There has been a shortage of beds but the civic administration has been continuously working to scale it up. The PMC had directed private hospitals to make available 80 per cent of their operational beds for Covid treatment. They are gradually allotting beds…,” said Manisha Naik, assistant medical officer in-charge of Bed Management in PMC.

“In the next few days, private hospitals will make 80 per cent of their beds available for Covid treatment. This is likely to ease the situation…,” she added.

The civic administration has also been trying to scale up the number of ICU beds at its jumbo hospital, reopened due to the surge, and the dedicated Covid hospital at Baner.

Of the total 7,811 Covid hospital beds in public and private hospitals under PMC jurisdiction, 1,092 were vacant on Tuesday night, majority of which were isolation beds without oxygen support (691) and isolation beds with oxygen support (377).

District PMC PCMC
Description No. of Beds Vacant Beds Today No of Beds Vacant Beds Today No of Beds Vacant Beds Today
1. Total Covid-19 beds in the district 18227 3662 7658 1056 4086 687
2. Beds for Isolation -Without Oxygen 8313 2258 2276 679 2297 311
3. Beds for Isolation -With Oxygen 7645 1045 4457 382 1272 195
4. ICU Beds Without Ventilator Support 1387 276 432 5 347 163
5. ICU Beds With Ventilator Support 882 83 493 0 170 18

*The information is from the Beds Availability Dashboard created by Pune Divisional Commissioner’s Office. Hospital-wise details can be accessed at divcommpunecovid.com/ccsbeddashboard/hsr

In PCMC jurisdiction, 592 beds were vacant of the total 4,086 hospital beds allocated for Covid-19 treatment at various government and private facilities. Of these, 19 were ICU beds with ventilator support and 175 were ICU beds without ventilator support.

According to the district administration, there are a total of 77,730 active Covid-19 patients in Pune district right now, with 8,307 patients reporting recovery on Tuesday. The actual number could be even higher, as the state government data showed over 82,000 active patients in the district.

There is, however, a continuing discrepancy between the daily coronavirus numbers shared by the district administration and those shared by the state government.

Meanwhile, with barely any beds available for Covid-19 patients, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has decided to acquire 50 per cent of beds in as many as 60 private hospitals. Municipal Commissioner Rajesh Patil has ordered setting up of a coordinating committee of civic officials to monitor bed space in these hospitals.

“The committee is expected to keep in touch with the management of these hospitals and verify whether 50 per cent beds are reserved for coronavirus patients,” the civic chief has said in his directives, invoked under the Disaster Management Act.

The PCMC has been forced to take the steps as it has almost run out of bed space in its own hospitals. The civic chief has also directed the committee to monitor medical services, treatment protocols, bills, daily patient report and related matters.

The committee will be headed by Joint City Engineer Shrikant Savane. When contacted, Savane said, “There are some 4,500 beds in these private hospitals. We have decided to take control of 2,250 beds…we will ensure that these beds are reserved only for coronavirus patients.”

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