BMC to add 350 additional ICU beds to tackle Covid
BL Soni (Free Press Journal)

To ensure that critical patients get ICU beds on time, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has now decided to increase the ICU beds by 350 in the next three days. At present, BMC has around 1,250 ICU beds in civic and private-run hospitals. Around 1,110 patients out of the 22,975 active cases and 6,485 symptomatic cases were critical.

This decision comes after a sudden rise in the number of corona cases due to which active cases have also increased in Mumbai. Moreover, only 2-3 per cent of ICU and symptomatic beds are vacant at private hospitals.

According to the BMC data, the city has reported 11,035 corona cases in the last seven days, following which active cases increased to 23,930 on September 6 from 20,554 which was on August 31.

The city is currently the second worst-affected district in the country after Pune.

BMC dashboard showed that of the 1,399 COVID ICU beds in the city, 1,247 were occupied and only 154 were available on Sunday. Of the 931 beds supported by a ventilator, merely 43 were available.

“Of the 528 ICU beds in private hospitals, only 38 were vacant on Sunday. Of the 871 ICU beds of the BMC, only 103 were available,” said an official.

Suresh Kakani, Additional municipal commissioner, BMC, said currently the situation is not out of control, there has been a sudden rise in the numbers due to which demands for beds have also increased. “There is a slight bed crunch in the private sector but ICU beds are available in the public sector. In addition, we are installing 350 additional ICU beds in the next three days,” he said.

The jumbo facilities at Mahalaxmi and Nesco, Goregaon, will add 30 and 220 ICU beds, respectively. The inauguration is likely in a few days, and the ICUs will start admitting patients after that.

Health Experts attributed the bed's shortage to the lack of adherence to social distancing during the Ganpati festival which played a role in the surge.

“Almost after two months, we heard that there is a shortage of beds in the city but still BMC has controlled everything and they are preparing for the future. But since cases have surged, so has the demand for beds as all the private hospitals in the city don’t have many vacant ICU beds,” he said.

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