As Covid-19 cases surge, ITBP to reopen Sardar Patel care centre in Delhi
The Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) is looking to operationalise its Covid-19 centre in south Delhi's Chhatarpur. The Sardar Patel Covid Care Centre was the world's largest; it was closed down in February.
People aware of the development said that the centre is expected to be operational in three days. As many as 11,657 patients were treated by the facility in seven-and-half months.
On Thursday, the Union home ministry (MHA) released a letter which said that the Delhi government had requested for reopening of the facility. It also said that a deliberation took place on Thursday evening by ITBP officials with all the stakeholders.
The MHA has designated ITBP as the nodal force for operating the facility.
"It has been decided to provide an adequate number of medical officers and para-medical staff to man 500 oxygenated beds to Sardar Patel Covid centre, Chhattarpur in Delhi," the MHA said in the letter.
The home ministry also said that it has been decided to provide adequate number of medical officers and paramedical staff to man 500 oxygenated beds at the facility. The ITBP may draw required medical manpower, if needed, from other central police forces also, the MHA letter further said.
"The boarding and lodging arrangements for doctors and paramedical staff, including expenses, thereon will be made by Govt of NCT of Delhi," the MHA letter said.
Inaugurated in July 5, 2020, the Sardar Patel centre was serving as a treatment centre for those who are asymptomatic but cannot afford home isolation.
The ITBP had started the facility as an emergency measure when the country, as well as the national capital, was reeling under the impact of Covid-19 pandemic. The world's largest Covid-19 care centre admitted patients referred by 11 hospitals in Delhi, including AIIMS, Safdarjung, Medanta and Max Hospital.
The number of patients being treated at the centre during the peak of the infection was 2,000.
The Sardar Patel Covid Care Centre is 1,700 feet long, 700 feet wide - roughly the size of 20 football fields - and has 200 enclosures with 50 beds each.