The situation in the district is getting worse with every passing day as COVID-19 cases continue to rise on a daily basis during the second wave. It is an emergency-like situation for the district administration, as they fight to increase the bed strength in the district, by using every possible opportunity. There is a serious shortage of beds, as people getting infected is much higher than the available bed strength of around 6,500.
In April alone, the district recorded close to 18,000 new cases and every day the count is going up by 1,000 to 1,200 new ones. While the cases recorded are only those who opt for RT PCR test for confirmation, in reality the cases are much higher, as people, opting for rapid antigen test or HR CT scan to confirm the infection or positivity, are not officially recorded, said District Medical and Health Officer P. Suryanarayana.
As of now, there are around 2,200 beds in the government-run hospitals such as CSR block in KGH and VIMS, and around 4,500 beds in notified private hospitals under category A and B.
The District Collector has asked all the 80 private hospitals in the district, including those notified earlier under category A and B, to put 50% of its beds under his control.
This should reduce the scramble for beds and solve the issue of private hospitals denying beds to needy patients to a certain extent, as around 4,000 beds will now be directly under the control of the District Collector and the beds will be allotted through the 24/7 district COVID Call Centre, which is located at Andhra Medical College and manned by a team of doctors. All one has to do is to call the call centre numbers and ask for beds 0891 2501278 or 0891 2501279 and depending on the availability they will be allotted. The call centre will keep track of the availability of beds, said District COVID Special Officer and Principal of Andhra Medical College P.V. Sudhakar.
Apart from bringing 50% of the beds in private hospitals under the control of the district administration, 15 new private hospitals have been notified, which should increase the bed strength by at least 300.
This apart, 90 beds in the family ward of District Psychiatry Hospital, which were oxygenated last year during the first wave, and 150 beds in the ENT and Regional Eye Hospital, have once again been opened up. This should take the total bed count from 6,500 to 7,000 plus, said Dr. Sudhakar. The bed strength in KGH is also being increased from 500 to 1,000, in a phased manner.
Right now the CSR Block, which has about 500 beds is the designated COVID block. “To begin with we are converting 100 beds in the Rajendra Prasad block for COVID care and another 400 will be added from various other wards in the next few days, to take the total bed strength at KGH to 1,000,” said the AMC Principal.