BMC introduces ‘Save Lives’ strategy to bring down Covid case fatality rateUpdated: Jul 01, 2020 00:03 IST
To reduce rising fatalities due to Covid-19 in Mumbai, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has come up with a nine-point strategy called ‘Save Lives’. Mumbai’s fatality rate due to Covid-19 was 5.86% as of June 30, higher than Maharashtra’s average fatality rate of 4.49%, and India’s average fatality rate of 2.9% (according to a report by Medical Education and Drugs Department, Government of Maharashtra).
The Save Lives strategy will include more detailed monitoring and supervision of critical patients, including video surveillance by the head of the unit and head of the hospital.
In light of a Covid-19 death, a mandatory audit will take place, and the video footage will be forensically examined to determine causes.
BMC noted that several deaths occurred between 1am and 5am, often when serious and critical patients disconnect oxygen support and leave their beds to go to the toilet. They often end up straining themselves and collapse.
As part of the Save Lives strategy, the civic body has decided to keep a bedpan for every bed and a commode for every four beds nearby and has instructed all healthcare staff to cooperate with patients who want to use the toilet in the night.
Municipal commissioner IS Chahal said, “Each hospital has to ensure supply of medicines like antivirals, steroids, and plasma and see that they are used. There will be a mandatory video or telephone meeting twice a day for every case, between junior and senior healthcare staff.”
BMC has also mandated that healthcare staff maintain a proper protocol for every patient through checkboxes on individual case papers, updating the concerned patient’s treatment, from medicines, dosage, timings, diet, etc..
fatality in the city shot up from 3.7% on June 15 to 5.2% on June 16, after Mumbai reconciled figures of deaths, adding 862 deaths to the cumulative Covid-19 toll. The figures were reconciled after many public and private hospitals reported the deaths that had occurred as early as March and April, belatedly to BMC.
Following this, BMC issued two warnings to hospitals to submit pending data of all old deaths within 48 hours (post warning) or face strict action.
BMC will also conduct a study to examine the increase in fatality progressively (day after day) in May and June. The civic body believes that the fatality rate has not progressively shot up in the city over the past few weeks, and the sharp jump from 3.7% to 5.2% is attributed to the reconciliation of figures.
Suresh Kakani, additional municipal commissioner, in charge of the health department, said, “I have instructed staff from the health department to plot the reconciled figures of 862 deaths day-wise, as and when they occurred, and then calculate the increase in fatality. This exercise will be completed within two to three days, and will give us a clear picture of the fatality rate through May and June.”
In mid-April, the Maharashtra government set up a task force of nine doctors to examine reasons for high fatality in the state and suggest measures to reduce it. At the time, the fatality rate in the state had crossed 6%.