This Article is From Jun 10, 2020

Delhi To Double COVID-19 Beds In 22 Hospitals Amid Spurt In Cases

The announcement comes amid harrowing accounts of people struggling to get hospital beds for coronavirus patients in Delhi.

Delhi To Double COVID-19 Beds In 22 Hospitals Amid Spurt In Cases

Delhi, a coronavirus hotspot, has nearly 29,000 cases.

New Delhi:

With Delhi struggling with a surge in coronavirus cases, the Aam Aadmi Party government on Tuesday said it has decided to increase beds in 22 private hospitals by more than double. These include hospitals like Apollo, Batra, Fortis, Max, BL Kapoor, Maharaja Agrasen and Venkateswara. These hospitals currently have 1,441 beds for COVID-19, but will now be increased to 3,456.

Earlier, the Delhi government had ordered that all the hospitals and nursing homes with more than 50 beds should reserve for 20 per cent of their capacity for coronavirus patients.

Delhi's infections of coronavirus will climb to more than 5 lakh by the end of July and it does not have the hospital capacity to handle such an outbreak, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said on Tuesday.

The warning came as harrowing accounts of people struggling to get a hospital bed in the Indian capital emerged, including some who said their loved ones died on the doorsteps of medical centres which refused to take them in.

Despite a vast lockdown imposed in March, the disease is spreading in India at one of the world's fastest rates as it re-opens a battered economy.

The caseload stood at 2,66,598, the world's fifth largest and set to overtake the United Kingdom in the next few days.

Delhi, one of the hotspots, has more than 30,000 cases that will grow to 5.5 lakh by the end of July, Manish Sisodia told reporters. By then it will need 80,000 beds compared with its current capacity of nearly 9,000.

"For Delhi this is a big problem, if cases continue to rise," he said.

A Delhi government coronavirus mobile app showed the city of more than 2 crore people had 8,814 COVID-19 beds, with more than half occupied. Of the 96 hospitals listed, 20 had no beds available, the app showed on Tuesday.

The app also tracks the availability of ventilators, and data showed that only 260 of the 519 ventilators were in use.