Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain (File image)
The number of COVID-19-designated beds at Delhi government-run hospitals has been increased from 6,000 to 13,000, Health Minister Satyendar Jain said on April 14.
"More beds are being consistently added," Jain said, adding that the Delhi government has also requested that the Centre assist in increasing the hospital bed capacity amid the fresh COVID-19 surge in the national capital.
The Arvind Kejriwal-led government on April 14 increased the number of beds for COVID-19 treatment in government-run hospitals by 718. This marks the fourth increase in the number of beds in Delhi in the past 15 days.
Hit by a second wave of the pandemic, the national capital has been witnessing a constant spurt in the daily count of infections. As per the latest update issued by the health department, 17,282 positive cases and 104 deaths were reported, at a positivity rate of 15.92 percent.
"In Delhi, as well as the country, the cases are steadily increasing. The trend has not slowed down yet," the health minister said.
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Citing the burden on health infrastructure, Jain said that the patients who contract the virus should be admitted to hospitals only on the advice of doctors.
"If mildly symptomatic or asymptomatic patients rush to the hospitals, the ones who have been advised (by doctors) and are facing severe symptoms might face some problems in accessing the beds," he said.
In order to augment COVID hospital bed capacity, the Delhi government has also roped in over 20 hotels and banquets.
Jain also noted that "people can check the number of beds on the Delhi Corona app" before going to the hospital, and may also take help of the helpline numbers.
Despite the steady increase in cases, the fatality rate has substantially reduced, Jain said. "In November 2020, it was between 2-3 percent, but has now dropped down to less than 0.5 percent," he pointed out.