Hotels and banquets to boost Covid bed count in Delhi
- According to the order signed by health secretary Amit Singla, the hotels requisitioned included Raddison Blue, The Surya, and Crowne Plaza.
With the number of Covid-19 cases in the capital increasing at an unprecedented pace, the Delhi government on Wednesday ordered linking of 23 private and five government hospitals with hotels and banquet halls to manage moderate patients who do not need strict monitoring.
According to the order signed by health secretary Amit Singla, the hotels requisitioned included Raddison Blue, The Surya, and Crowne Plaza.
As many as 100 rooms were reserved in Raddison Blue hotel in Paschim Vihar, which is linked to Maharaja Agrasen hospital in Punjabi Bagh. At least 200 rooms will be reserved in Surya, that is linked to Holy Family hospital, 150 beds in hotel Crowne Plaza, Rohini, which has been linked to Fortis Shalimar Bagh and another 200 rooms in the hotel’s Okhla branch has been attached with Apollo hospital. BLK hospital has been linked with 60 beds in JP Siddharth.
Last year too, the Delhi government had linked hotels and banquet halls to hospitals to provide additional beds for patients with moderate symptoms.
The linked hotels will provide room, housekeeping, disinfection, and food to the patients while the hospitals will provide staff, all consumables such as PPE kits, N95 masks, gloves, medicines, and oxygen support.
According to the order, five-star hotels will be allowed to charge a maximum of Rs5,000 per patient per day and the four and three star hotels can charge ₹4,000 for the services rendered. In addition, the hospitals can charge ₹5,000 per patient per bed and an additional ₹2,000 for oxygen support. Any investigations needed will be chargeable as per hospital rates, the order said.
“The rates of the banquet halls/ other facilities will be provided by divisional commissioner in due course,” a second order signed by Singhla read.
In a separate order, the health secretary also asked for 678 more ward beds, 182 more ICU beds without ventilators, and 28 more ICU beds with ventilators in three Delhi government hospitals, including the biggest hospital in the trans-Yamuna region, Guru Teg Bahadur. With the current addition, all 1,500 beds in the GTB hospital will be utilised for Covid-19 patients.
The civic authorities on Wednesday appealed to the government to utilise municipal establishments, such as community centres and sports complexes, for creating temporary Covid care centres (CCC) or isolation facilities.
The North Delhi Municipal Corporation has decided to make its Balakram Hospital in Timarpur a Covid care centre. Authorities have also written to the state government to convert Hindu Rao Hospital into a dedicated Covid-19 facility.
Earlier too, during the third wave of Covid-19 in October-November last year, the Hindu Rao Hospital, which has 980 beds, was turned into a dedicated Covid-19 facility.
“Everyday 30-40 Covid-19 patients are coming to Hindu Rao Hospital. Hence, today (Wednesday), I have written to the Delhi government to make this a Covid-19 dedicated facility as was done before. We have also decided to start a Covid care centre of 200 beds at Balakram Hospital, where patients can get themselves tested and those with mild symptoms can also be isolated there,” said North MCD mayor Jai Prakash.
There are nearly 119 community centres with the North Corporation. Similarly the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) runs 97 community centres. The east civic body has 71 community centres.
“If the government wants they can use over community halls and schools to set up covid care centres or create isolation wards in them to increase the number of beds for Covid patients,” Narendra Chawla, leader of the House in SDMC, said.