Mumbai: Over 50% COVID beds in hospitals still vacant amid spike in cases

More than 50 per cent of the COVID-19 beds at the civic and private-run hospitals are vacant despite there has been a more than two-fold rise in the corona active cases across the city. However, the footfalls of the patients have increased at the jumbo COVID-19 facilities and hospitals as compared to January and February this year.

Officials have attributed this to the number people are kept under home quarantine as 70 per cent of the patients are asymptomatic following 53 per cent of the total beds lying vacant. Moreover, the demand for oxygen beds has increased.

According to the dashboard, at present, Mumbai has 23,448 active COVID-19 patients. Out of this, 70 per cent (15,020) is asymptomatic. There are a total 13,514 beds available in hospitals, of which 7,183 are occupied, while 4,087 of the 8,461 oxygen beds are occupied. Similarly, out of the 966 ventilator beds, 657 are occupied.

At present, out of the 12,535 active beds in CCC-1, 554 are occupied. Another indicator of a marginal decline in admissions in critical cases has been the decrease in the occupancy of ICU beds.

Senior health officials said the daily admissions had dropped by half, down to 35-40 from the earlier 70 to 80.

“Daily, we have been witnessing a drop in admission of critical as well as other patients. Almost 25 per cent of beds in the hospital are vacant and now, we are seeing more mild to moderate cases, who are discharged within eight days and then observe home isolation for another 14 days,” he said.

A similar trend has been seen at BYL Nair and Lokmanya Tilak General Municipal Hospitals, the former, a dedicated COVID-19 hospital where daily admissions now number 50-60.

“It is good news for Mumbai, as daily admissions at the hospitals are decreasing. Earlier, there used to be 90 admissions a day. Almost 40-60 per cent of the cases are mild to moderate,” said Dr Ramesh Bharmal, dean, Sion hospital.

Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said more patients were opting for home care as most of them are asymptomatic and do not need hospitalisation.

“An increasing number of people in high-rises are opting to stay home and be treated. The rush to get admitted has definitely reduced,” he said.

“Doctors from the ward-level war rooms follow up with patients in home isolation. Many patients also consult their own doctors. The city currently has 470 critical patients,” Kakani said.

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