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Jumbo Covid care centres prepped to reopen if case spike continues: Rao

PUNE In light of the increasing Covid cases in Pune, the administration has decided to keep its Jumbo Covid care facilities in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PMC) ready to admit patients
By Manasi Deshpande
PUBLISHED ON MAR 02, 2021 10:26 PM IST

PUNE In light of the increasing Covid cases in Pune, the administration has decided to keep its Jumbo Covid care facilities in the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PMC) ready to admit patients.

Until patients are admitted to these facilities, the district administration has devised a plan to use the infrastructure for inoculation.

According to Saurabh Rao, Pune divisional commissioner, the Jumbo Covid facilities will be ready with basic preparations in a week, and as per requirement the capacity of these facilities will be increased.

Following a steering committee meeting held on Tuesday, Saurabh Rao said that the Jumbo hospitals in PMC and PCMC will be made ready with oxygen beds. “Considering the present Covid situation it is essential to keep Jumbo facilities ready for the next three months as part of health infrastructure preparedness,” said Rao.

Pune district had two Jumbo Covid facilities, one at the College of Engineering Pune (COEP) and another at Annasaheb Magar Stadium in Bhosari.

The COEP facility was made operational during the last week of August with a capacity of 800 beds. The Annasaheb Magar facility was operational in September with an 800-bed capacity. As the Covid tally came down drastically by December, the administration decided to shut down both facilities and distribute the health equipment such as beds, ventilators, and oxygen cylinders, to other government-run medical facilities.

In next three days a structural and electrical audit of both the Jumbo facilities in PMC and PCMC will be done by the College of Engineering, Pune. Rao said that once the audit is completed, basic preparations will be carried out within a week. Corporations will float tenders for new operators.

After reopening, the Jumbo hospitals will only have oxygen beds and patients needing ICUs will be transferred to Sassoon hospital.

“We have decided that we will not keep a high dependency unit (HDU) at a Jumbo facility. We only use oxygenated beds in the facility and a new operator will be appointed for this. We are tying up a Jumbo facility with Sassoon. Sassoon hospital’s dean has agreed to admit the ICU patients on priority. Of course we will have to increase the infrastructure and human resources at Sassoon. In Friday’s meeting we will put this before the guardian minister and take further decisions as per his instructions,” said Rao.

The district administration has decided to use the jumbo facilities as a vaccination centre until patients are admitted. “We have made detailed plans for the actual preparations at the vaccination centre when people come to get the vaccines. There is ample space there and people can sit properly. So as per need we are gradually increasing the infrastructure,” Rao said.

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