The 22-storey Gurukul Society in Mumbai’s Dahisar area transformed an empty 2-BHK apartment into a quarantine centre last year during the Corona surge. Now, with the second phase leaving the citizens scrambling for beds in hospitals, the society has reopened its 3-bed facility which can be expanded to 5 beds for the sake of home isolation.
The secretary of the society, Rashmin Parekh, said: “Last year, we had started this isolation centre and this year we have reopened it as Mumbai is seeing a second phase of Corona. This is for our members benefit only”.
Manisha Vohra, a chartered accountant resides in the building, said: “The isolation centre saw a decent response last year and came in very handy of those patients living in the 1-BHK apartment as they could use the facility and keep their other family members safe from infection by moving into this extended home of sorts. The society has tied up with a doctors’ association in the vicinity who would provide healthcare support and guidance to the positive patients. Meanwhile, they have also tied up with a charitable trust which would provide all equipment, beds and liquid oxygen to the society as and when required.”
A few kilometres away from the Gurukul Society is Pawandham Temple in Borivali West. The temple trust once again converted its four-storey building into a quarantine centre with 100-bed capacity. While 50 beds are ready to take in Covid patients equipped with oxygen concentrator unit, oximeter, pulse metre, portable BP apparatus, monitor machine among others, but lack of medical oxygen has stalled their plans, and it’s turning out to be an endless wait for the temple trust. Santosh Singh, Pawan Dham Managing Committee Member, says, “We have so far got 50 beds ready, we have tied up with Apex Hospital for healthcare support like doctors, medical staff. All we are waiting for is the critical oxygen supply before that comes we can’t start. Assurance has been given by some suppliers but let’s see.”
Another member of the temple trust Ashok Shah said the facility will be available for those with mild symptoms for a nominal cost in which apart from medical support, they will also be provided meals and ever since they put up the board of reopening there have been several enquiries asking for beds but their hands are tied in absence of oxygen supply.
As citizens and help groups join hands with the government to fight this war against Corona yet again with whatever they can do, the shortage of oxygen supply and critical drugs is derailing all efforts to help out those in urgent need.