Pune admin predicts 2.30 lakh Covid cases by Sept 14; shortage of 1,984 oxygen beds, 348 ventilators
With Pune’s Covid-19 curve refusing to flatten, the civic administration has revised its projection for next week with the positive progressive tally predicted to reach 2,30,194 and deaths touching 5,610 in the district by September 14.
The projection showcases a rise of at least 27,000 cases in eight days as the Pune district tally stood at 2,03,468 with the death toll at 4,477 as of Tuesday. This may leave the administration staring at a shortage of 1,984 oxygen beds, 145 ICU beds and 348 ventilators, as per the projection by the district authorities.
As per officials, Pune district’s doubling rate has reached 32 days and the death percentage of the district has increased to 2.30 per cent.
“We have prepared the prediction for the forthcoming days about the Covid situation in Pune district as well as for Pune division and will accordingly start micro-planning. Even though there is a growing gap between the number of rising cases and the number of beds, we are 100 per cent sure of bridging the gap,” said Pune Divisional Commissioner Saurabh Rao.
With the surge in number of cases, the administration has increased its testing. In the last four to five days, the number of tests and along with positive cases has increased in the district, said Rao. Pune city is reporting an average of 2,000 cases every day over the past four days and Pimpri-Chinchwad is recording at least 1,000 cases daily, especially in rural parts the spread of the virus is concentrated in certain villages, said civic officials.
“Around 80 per cent of patients are coming from 62% gram panchayats. So, we have a focused approach of creating public awareness in these areas,” said Rao.
One of the major contributing factors to the bed shortage is that around 30 per cent of critical patients are coming to Pune from neighbouring districts. “It is a matter of concern for us. So, we are working on increasing the facilities in districts such as Kolhapur, Solapur and Satara. As far as oxygen supply is concerned, officials have been appointed at all the 11 oxygen-producing plants in Pune district to look after the production and distribution,” said Rao.
To deal with manpower shortage, the government has now taken a call to absorb medical students who have appeared for the exam. “Today, I have sent a letter to the municipal secretary, medical education, in which I have requested him that all the post graduate students who have appeared for their exams and are right now free from academic pressure, should be allowed to work as trained doctors in the civic body’s Covid-19 programme,” said Rao.
These students, according to Rao, will be duly compensated and additionally this service for Covid will be deducted from their bond duration. Secretary medical education has agreed that the state government will actively consider this proposal.
“This would be an official channel through which we could get some manpower and in Pune district we have got 600 postgraduate medical students,” Rao added.
Projected figures as on Sept 14 by the Pune district administration
Total number of progressive positive cases – 2,30,194
Total number of recoveries – 1,72,311
Total number of deaths – 5,610
Total number of active cases – 52,272
Predicted deficit in infra on Sept 14
Isolation beds without O2 : 198
Oxygen supported beds : -1,984
Total number of ICU beds : 145
Number of ventilator beds : -348