The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is all set to upgrade its Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) COVID-19 jumbo center into a complete air conditioned facility in the coming weeks. With the temperature rising, patients admitted in this centre have complained of a drop in oxygen levels due to the increased humidity in the day. The BKC jumbo centre is one of the largest facilities in Mumbai, which has a capacity of 2,300 plus beds, that includes 800 plus oxygen beds and 120 plus ICU beds.
This is the only dedicated COVID-19 facility that is available for Mumbaikars in Bandra east, Bandra Kurla Complex, Khar and Santacruz. Gurunanak Hospital is open only for BMC staff only and VN Desai Hospital is not taking any COVID-19 patients.
The decision to provide the jumbo centre with better facilities was taken in a meeting held on Monday. The meeting was attended by the dean of the BKC jumbo centre, deputy municipal commissioner Parag Masurkar, Bandra (East) Member of the Legislative Assembly Zeeshan Siddiqui and other health officials.
Siddiqui said, since the past few weeks, he has been receiving complaints from patients about the drop in oxygen levels. "I have made a few inspection visits to the centre and found out that the tents get excessively heated in the day. There are coolers, but they are not adequate to tackle the heat, as the humidity also rises," Siddiqui told the Free Press Journal. "I approached the concerned authorities so that we can improve the infrastructure. This is the only COVID-19 facility that is available for the common people and I want to make complete use of it," he added.
In the meeting, the possibility of expanding the bed capacity was also discussed. Civic officials said that only a few beds in the general ward are vacant presently and all the beds in the ICU and ventilation sections are filling fast. "We have floated our demands to the senior BMC officials and local MLAs. They have assured that the infrastructure will be improved soon," said Dr Rajesh Dere, dean of the facility.
Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner and in-charge of public health in the BMC, said that the civic body has approved a proposal of augmenting the power supply system at the facility. "The power supply network will not be adequate to run so many ACs. We have approved a proposal of augmenting the capacity. After this, more ACs and coolers can be installed for better ventilation," said Kakani.