Delhi might see 5.5 lakh cases by July-end, LG not ready to reconsider decision to open hospitals for all: Sisodia

Deputy CM Manish Sisodia, along with Aam Aadmi Party National convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal addressing a press conference at the party's headquarters in New Delhi on January 28, 2020. | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar
Staff Reporter? New Delhi: 09 June 2020 13:37 IST
Updated: 09 June 2020 15:56 IST

Delhi will need 80,000 beds by July-end, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia told reporters after a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA)

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Tuesday said Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal did not agree to reconsider the latter's decision to open Delhi’s hospitals for everyone.

Baijal chaired a crucial meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) with Sisodia and Health Minister Satyendar Jain to chart the way forward regarding the city’s strategy to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

“LG sir’s yesterday’s decision to open Delhi’s hospitals for everyone, it has created problems for people of Delhi, and we had raised the issues in the SDMA’s (State Disaster Management Authority) meeting, but LG sir did not agree to it... We urged him to reconsider his decision, but he did not accept it,” Mr. Sisodia told reporters after the meeting.

On Monday, Mr. Baijal had overruled the Delhi government’s Sunday’s decision to restrict treatment at private and Delhi government-run hospitals to citizens bearing documented proof of residence in Delhi.

5.5 lakh cases

“In SDMA’s meeting today it was discussed that in Delhi by June 15, there will 44,000 cases and 6,600 beds will be needed. By June 30, there will be one lakh cases and 15,000 beds will be needed. By July 15, there will be around 2.25 lakh cases and 33,000 beds will be needed. By July 31, there will be 5.5 lakh cases in Delhi and around 80,000 beds will be needed,” Mr. Sisodia said.

The estimation is based on a report submitted last week by a five-member committee appointed by the Delhi government.

“In today’s meeting of DDMA when we requested LG sir that before overturning the decision (of the Delhi government), you must have done some calculation on how much the cases will increase and how many cases will come from outside, he did not have any idea about it,” the Deputy Chief Minister said.

“We also requested him that you must have done some calculation on how many beds will be needed when people from across the country will come to Delhi, but he did not have any calculation on it,” he added.

Community spread

Mr. Sisodia also said that the central government officials have said that there was no community transmission of the virus in Delhi.

“Central government officials were also part of the meeting and they said that there is no community spread in Delhi and there is no need to have a discussion on it,” the minister said.

But before the meeting with the LG, Mr. Jain had told media that there were a lot of cases where the source of infection cannot be found. “There are four stages and the third stage is community spread. Community spread is when the person does not know from where he got infected. There are a lot of cases like that. In about half of the cases, people do not know from where they got the infection,” he said.

“We can’t declare community spread, it is the ambit of the central government. Community spread is a technical term… But I can tell you that there are a lot of cases where the source (of infection) cannot be found,” the minister said.

Mr. Baijal took to twitter to state that he had advised “timely action” regarding the ramping up of physical infrastructure and human resource-related requirements “considering possible scenarios.” The LG stated he had also given directions for thorough contact tracing of affected persons and testing as per ICMR guidelines for COVID-19 “without any deviation.”

The admission of eligible COVID positive patients, he directed, should also be ensured “as per protocol” at city hospitals.

“Directed all stakeholders for containment zone strategy as per ICMR guidelines. Field officials to delineate containment zones properly to ensure their effective management to contain the spread of infection,” he tweeted.

Mr. Baijal said he had also advised to follow “best practices from others” for management of COVID-19 cases in Delhi.

More In Delhi