- The city's civic body is preparing for possible shortage of hospital beds
- Mumbai aims to make around 7,000 beds available by weekend
- Maharashtra has witnessed a huge surge in coronavirus cases
As coronavirus cases continue to rise in Mumbai, the city's civic body is preparing for a possible shortage of hospital beds, thus adding and reserving more beds for Covid patients. At private hospitals, all ICU beds and 80 per cent of all Covid beds will be reserved for centralised allotment to patients through the civic body's "Ward War Rooms".
By this weekend, Mumbai is aiming to make around 7,000 beds available for patients infected by the virus and need to be hospitalised.
Mumbai recorded 5,888 new cases and 12 deaths on Monday as Maharashtra remains the worst-hit state in India.
2,269 beds for Covid patients, including 360 ICUs, will be added to private hospitals in Mumbai immediately, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said in a circular.
"No bed will be allotted directly to anyone by hospitals. All allotment of hospital beds shall be through 24 Ward War Rooms only and therefore, no one should try to procure positive Covid report directly from testing labs," BMC commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal told news agency ANI.
The new beds will be in addition to over 3,000 beds that are currently available for COVI9-19 patients in Mumbai. Of these 3,000, 450 beds are in private hospitals.
These beds are expected to fill fast in a few days if the current trend in rising cases continues.
On Monday, the civic authority directed hospitals and nursing homes against allotting Covid beds to asymptomatic patients to ensure "prompt availability of beds to the needy".
Private hospitals in the city say they are already reaching a situation where beds are filling up. The facilities have also been asked to discharge asymptomatic patients at the earliest to vacate beds for the patients with more serious symptoms.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday had hinted at re-imposition of a lockdown in the state to control the spread of the virus. He asked officials to prepare a plan to enforce a lockdown, saying people were not following safety rules.