Delhi will need 42,000 Covid beds by mid-July, projects govt panel
Delhi ended Saturday with 27,654 cases of which 16,229 are active. A total of 4,225 infected persons are being treated in hospitals currently.Updated: Jun 07, 2020 08:15 IST
There will be 100,000 cases of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in Delhi by the end of June, members of an expert committee, set up to aid the government in planning the augmenting of health infrastructure in the city, state said on Saturday.
The five-member committee tabled its report to the Delhi government on Saturday and the government is yet to make its findings public. However, speaking to HT about the report, one of the committee members, on condition of anonymity, elaborated on their findings and said Delhi will need 15,000 beds by the end of the month and around 42,000 by mid-July.
Delhi ended Saturday with 27,654 cases of which 16,229 are active. A total of 4,225 infected persons are being treated in hospitals currently.
The committee submitted its recommendations on the number of beds needed till mid-July for the treatment of Covid-19 patients to the government.
Delhi has a little over 8,600 beds for the treatment of Covid-19 patients . Of these, almost 49% are already occupied. The government is in the process of scaling up the beds to about 9,800 by June 15.
“There are about 25,000 Covid-19 cases in Delhi currently and the doubling time is 14 to 15 days. This means, by mid-June there will be about 50,000 cases and by month end 1 lakh cases. Now, assuming that 20 to 25% of these patients need hospitalisation, Delhi would need 15,000 beds by the end of the month and 42,000 by mid-July. We have not calculated beyond that,” said Dr Mahesh Verma, chairman of the five-member committee.
So far, 761 people have died of the infection in the city.
Dr Verma added that most of these beds have to be level 3 or 4 – meaning they have to be equipped with high-flow oxygen or ventilators. The committee estimates that around 20% of those hospitalised may require ventilator support.
“The government might have to start looking at makeshift beds in banquet halls, open grounds or stadiums,” he said. The committee has observed trends in cities such as Mumbai and Ahmedabad to prepare its report.
At a time when the government is considering reserving all healthcare facilities in Delhi for the treatment of Delhi residents, the committee has mentioned that the estimates are based on Delhi’s population alone.
“The committee has said that all its projections are based on the number of cases that are being reported from Delhi each day and the increasing trend. This means that the infrastructure suggested by the committee is what is needed just for those living in Delhi,” said Dr Arun Gupta, another member of the committee.
“The government panel headed by Verma has stated that with the sharp increase in Covid-19 cases and the limited resources, there is an urgent need to prioritise who gets treatment first and who actually ought to be tested. In that case, it found that people of Delhi should be given preference. The report also talks of taking over banquet halls, stadiums, and other air-conditioned halls to increase the city’s bed capacity,” said a senior government official on condition of anonymity.