As cases surge, 20 ICU beds at Hindu Rao Hospital earmarked for COVID-19 patients

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New Delhi, Nov 17 (PTI) Amid a massive surge in coronavirus cases in the national capital in the last several days, authorities on Tuesday said 20 ICU beds at civic-run Hindu Rao Hospital have been earmarked for COVID-19 patients.

North Delhi Mayor Jai Prakash on Tuesday afternoon inspected the hospital and took stock of the situation there.

'In view of the increasing cases of coronavirus, 20 ICU beds have been arranged separately for the corona patients at the Hindu Rao Hospital,' he said.

The number of beds will be further increased, he said.

The North Delhi Municipal Corporation is always ready to serve the citizens, but the Delhi government should also provide funds to the corporation, the mayor said.

Earlier in the day, sources said, the North Corporation-run hospital is likely to be converted into a dedicated COVID-19 facility again.

The 980-bed hospital, which is the the largest municipal hospital in Delhi, was designated as a coronavirus facility on June 14, when the city was under the first wave of the spread of infection.

However, on October 13 it was removed from the list of such facilities in view of its low occupancy.

With the capital city now under the third wave of the spread of COVID-19, the hospital is likely to be converted into a dedicated facility once again, sources said.

The Centre, after a high-level meeting here recently, had announced a slew of steps including making available 300 additional ICU beds, doubling the number of daily RT-PCR tests and a house-to-house survey in the national capital to check the spiralling numbers of cases in Delhi.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah had said some of the hospitals under the municipal corporations of Delhi will be converted into dedicated COVID hospitals. The National Centre for Disease Control, in a report drafted recently, had warned that Delhi needed to be prepared for about 15,000 fresh COVID-19 cases per day, taking into account the winter-related respiratory problems, a large influx of patients from outside and festive gatherings.

Delhi recorded 3,797 fresh COVID-19 cases on Monday, taking the infection tally in the national capital to over 4.89 lakh, even as 99 new fatalities pushed the toll to 7713, authorities said.

The highest single-day spike till date here, 8,593 cases, was recorded on November 11 when 85 fatalities were recorded.

Delhi has witnessed a spurt in coronavirus cases since October 28 when the daily rise breached the 5,000-mark for the first time and it crossed the 8,000-mark on Wednesday.

On Thursday, 104 deaths, the highest in over five months, were recorded in the city. PTI KND AAR AAR