Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, April 30
With over 15,000 cases of Covid-19, April accounted for the maximum caseload ever since the pandemic started. This is double the cases reported during the earlier peak in September last year.
Deaths this month saw a phenomenal increase from that of last month. Against 27 fatalities last month, 99 deaths were recorded in April. The pressure on hospitals has also increased as active cases have increased to 6,906 from 2,951 at the start of this month, leaving ICU beds exhausted. Even though Chandigarh conducted the maximum 92,710 tests, the positivity rate this month was high at 16.85 per cent. The weekly positivity rate has increased to 20 per cent.
In the past one week, the number of new infections has grown by an average of 2 per cent every day. For every 100 confirmed cases, 16 are currently infected, while 83 have recovered from the virus.
Dr KK Talwar, Health Adviser to Punjab and Chandigarh, said, “There is a need to increase the Covid bed capacity in hospitals to cater to patients. We also need adequate oxygen as we increase ICU beds. We should expand our capacities by roping in medical students so that we do not come on the line of Delhi.”
“The peak is expected to continue till the first week of May. Some restrictions are needed to stabilise the situation. The evening curfew is a step towards containing the spread and it should be ensured that people do not step out after 5 pm. Our religious organisations should join the fight and tell people to avoid coming to such places. People do not even wear masks properly, and such careless behaviour will add to more problems. The tricity should have a common programme to contain the spread,” said Dr Talwar.
50 beds more at GMCH
To meet the shortage of ICU beds in Chandigarh, the GMCH will set up additional 20 beds of L3 level on its campus. Additional 30 beds will be set up on the first floor of the Sector 48 hospital to provide the L2-level facility. Necessary pipeline for oxygen supply will be laid at the earliest.
Students of final-year MBBS will be engaged to assist the existing doctors in corona-related work. Students of final year in the nursing college will also be engaged to assist the nursing staff in the battle against the virus.
The basic faculty staff available at the GMCH will be also be utilised for Covid-related work. Doctors who have been sent on mobile duty outside would be replaced by final-year medical students so that those doctors can attend to serious patients in the hospital.
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