Collectors of central, south Gujarat districts told to ramp up Covid care facilities

Amid a surge in Covid-19 patients from adjacent districts, Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) and Officer on Special Duty (OSD) Vinod Rao held a video-conference Tuesday with district collectors of Bharuch, Panchmahals, Dahod, Chhota Udepur, Narmada, Anand, Kheda and Mahisagar and emphasised on need to expand healthcare facilities to relieve the city of the added patient burden.

Around 250 patients from other districts are seeking critical care in Vadodara city that has upped bed occupancy in its city hospitals. Of the 9,192 hospital beds for Covid-19 patients in the city, 6,525 were occupied on the day. Of the 1,532 ICU beds, 215 were vacant and of the 3,460 oxygen-equipped beds, 839 were vacant, officials said.

“There is a steep increase in number of patients from other districts admitted in hospitals of Vadodara in the last two days, and most of them are occupying ICU and ventilator beds. In view of this, we held a video-conference with collectors of Bharuch, Panchmahals, Dahod, Chhota Udepur, Narmada, Anand, Kheda and Mahisagar and instructed them to strengthen door-to-door surveillance, home-based Covid care, Covid hospitals and increase ICU beds and ventilators. We will ensure proper coordination between all districts of Central Gujarat so that all facilities, manpower and equipment available with all of us are pooled and put to optimum use,” Rao said.

The city recorded 384 Covid-19 cases on Tuesday, which took its virus count to 30,711.

Meanwhile, 10 teams formed to inspect 75 private hospitals in the city Tuesday identified nearly 650 patients who could be immediately discharged as they “did not need hospitalisation”, the Vadodara OSD said.

“We held a review meeting with the hospital inspection teams. They have covered about 75 private hospitals in the last three days. About 650 patients were identified for discharge jointly by hospitals and our teams and all of these patients have started home-based Covid Care by Sanjeevani Raths (Vadodara’s campaign for home-isolated positive patients). This has curtailed the number of hospitalised patients in the last three days. The teams will cover the remaining hospitals over the next two days,” Rao said.

The administration also held a meeting with the Chemists and Druggists Association to streamline the supply of Remdesivir injection and has communicated suggestions from the association to reduce the costs of the injections to the state health department.

The Vadodara administration, meanwhile, augmented beds for Covid patients at Gotri and SSG hospitals overnight following a surge in demand. On Tuesday, against the increased capacity of 650 beds, 552 patients were admitted at SSG hospital. Nearly 100 of 250 ICU beds and 46 of 170 ventilators were also vacant at the hospital. The B1 and B2 wards at the New Surgical Building at SSG hospital will also be utilised for Covid acre — 50 beds to be added by Tuesday and as many by Wednesday. “This will increase total capacity at SSG Hospital to 750 beds, and most of them will be with piped oxygen facility,” Rao said.

District Collector Shalini Agarwal and Rao also visited the EME campus in Fatehgunj to ascertain the possibility of setting up another facility there. The administration also held a meeting with expert engineers of L&T at Knowledge City to explore the possibility of setting up an oxygen distribution network on war footing. “They have agreed to support us with expertise, manpower and funding. The activity is in a nascent stage,” Rao said.

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