Nearly 4000 Covid care coaches with 64k beds ready for use by states: Railways
As India battles the resurgent and seemingly more contagious wave of coronavirus disease (Covid-19), the railways turned nearly 4,000 train coaches to Covid care units with almost 64,000 beds to be used by the states. Currently, 169 coaches have been handed over to various states for Covid care, said the Union ministry of railways on Tuesday.
Union minister for railways Piyush Goyal also tweeted regarding the development and placement of Covid-19 coaches at various stations, according to the requirement of different states. The minister also shared a video that showed the coaches, with the facilities of beds and oxygen to treat Covid-19 patients.
Indian Railways informed that it has catered to the full demand of the Delhi government for 75 Covid care coaches with a capacity of 1,200 beds. Of the 75 coaches, 50 are placed at Shakurbasti and 25 at Anand Vihar stations, a ministry statement informed. The national capital is currently struggling with an acute shortage of medical amenities in the fight against the fatal coronavirus, with hospitals across Delhi reporting a deficit of the antiviral drug Remidesivir, ICU beds, and medical oxygen. The healthcare infrastructure is overwhelmed with the second wave of the coronavirus, as hospitals run out of beds and other essential medical supplies amid a massive spike in the number of daily cases.
For Maharashtra, the state worst hit by Covid-19 in India, the railways said a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the divisional railway manager of Nagpur and the commissioner of the Nagpur municipal corporation to meet the new demand for coaches in the district.
"Accordingly, the Railways will deploy the Covid care rake with 11 coaches, comprising of modified sleepers with each coach having the capacity to accommodate 16 patients. The coaches will be equipped with the necessary medical infrastructure by the state health authorities with the Railways devising segmentation of space and utility for medical personnel in line with the MoU, besides taking care of sanitation and catering arrangements," the railways said in the statement.
Isolation coaches at the Ajni ICD area are also being mobilised to meet the state demands, it said. The facilities, devised by the railways in the states of Maharashtra, Delhi, and Madya Pradesh, have cumulatively registered 98 admissions and 28 subsequent discharges. The railways registered 17 admissions and six discharges, and presently 70 patients are utilizing the isolation coaches facility, as per the latest reports.