COVID-19 | Chief Minister says situation in Delhi under control despite spike in cases

‘Most cases are mild and do not require hospitalisation’

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday said that the number of COVID-19 cases in the Capital was high, but the situation was under control. Patients under home isolation, he said, had been sent pulse oximeters and despite a three-fold increase in testing, positive cases increased only by around 3,000 per day.

He said that Delhi had been getting mild cases over the past week. Out of 13,500 total beds in hospitals, around 6,000 were being used as most patients have mild symptoms and are recovering at their houses.

“As of today, there are 74,000 COVID-19 cases in Delhi, but if we try to comprehend these cases, I would say that the situation is under control. It is worrisome but there is no need to panic. A few days back, we used to conduct around 5,000-6,000 tests daily, out of which in 2,000-2,500 cases reports were positive. We have increased the testing three times, and now, instead of 5,000 tests per day, we are conducting 18,000-20,000 tests per day,” he said.

“We have seen that even if the testing has increased threefold in the last few days, the COVID-19-positive cases have only increased to 3,000-3,5000 from 2,000. If in the coming days, we conduct 1-2 lakh tests daily it is natural to observe a spike in the number of cases. A favorable thing is that out of 74,000 cases, around 45,000 have recovered that shows that people are recovering swiftly,” he also said.

For the last one week, he said, the number of hospital beds occupied by COVID-19 patients had remained stagnant. In the last week, Mr. Kejriwal said, the number of beds occupied had remained around 6,000. Even if there had been a spike in cases daily, the new cases did not require beds.

“Right now, we have 13,500 beds in hospitals, out of which 7,500 are vacant and 6,000 occupied. I feel that we would require more ICU beds in the coming days since we have to now focus on saving more lives in Delhi,” the Chief Minister said.

At a cabinet meeting on Friday, Mr. Kejriwal said, the Delhi Cabinet had sanctioned an increase in the capacity of beds by 450 at a newly constructed hospital in Burari. A banquet hall opposite to Loki Nayak Hospital has also been converted into a COVID-19 care facility with 100 beds. The government, over the coming days, will acquire more banquet halls and convert them into such care facilities in addition to attaching these to various COVID-19 hospitals.

“In the first week of June, we did face some issues with the beds for COVID-19 patients. I was arranging beds in the middle of the night. But now, the situation is under control. The Delhi government has arranged around 3,500 beds in hotels during the last 10 days, which has increased the overall bed capacity. In the coming days, with the installation of more beds in the Burari hospital and banquet halls, our bed count will increase,” he said.

Plasma therapy and providing pulse oximeters to patients who are recovering were the two foremost steps to ensure there were no deaths due to the virus. The Chief Minister said that Delhi was the first Indian State where plasma therapy was used with trials conducted on 29 patients at Lok Nayak Hospital.

“The therapy yielded outstanding results on patients, after which we have gotten permission to conduct 200 more trials in Delhi. Amongst the government hospitals, Lok Nayak and Rajiv Gandhi hospitals have been given the permission to conduct such trials. Many private hospitals have also asked for permission to conduct the said therapy,” he said.

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Printable version | Aug 5, 2020 1:27:19 PM |

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