15 new Corona hospitals likely to start in districts soon
Kolkata: Amid the spike in numbers of COVID-19 affected patients in the districts where the infection rate was lower ever since the lockdown was imposed, the state Health department is going to start 15 more COVID designated hospitals in 11 districts.
The Health department has sent its proposal to the Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for her clearance. Meanwhile, Alipurduar recorded its first COVID cases on May 29 while Coochbehar witnessed it's first cases on May 30. The Health department is now keen on starting more dedicated hospitals for the treatment of COVID patients in the districts to handle the situation. There are currently 69 dedicated COVID hospitals across the state out of which 16 are government hospitals while 53 are private hospitals requisitioned by the government.
A senior Health department official said that a proposal to open more dedicated hospitals in the districts has been sent to the Chief Minister. Works would be taken up after getting the clearance from her. The district hospitals or sub-divisional hospitals can be transformed into a COVID health care facility. Medium-scale private nursing homes with a bed capacity of 100-200 in the districts may be demarcated as COVID hospitals. All these 15 new COVID hospitals would be set up in a phased manner. Sources said that a senior minister of the Trinamool Congress government from North Bengal has assured the Health administration that a dedicated COVID hospital would be opened in Cooch Behar within the next 3-4 days. Works have started to facilitate COVID hospital in Alipurduar as well.
According to Health department sources, the districts which will get the new COVID hospitals include Coochbehar, North Dinajpur, Malda, Murshidabad, Nadia, Birbhum, Bankura, Purulia. Infection has already spread to all the 23 districts. A large number of migrants who have returned to various districts of Bengal from other states without a health check up, posed a serious challenge. Moreover, eight fresh Corona positive cases were detected in South Dinajpur on Tuesday, a new designated hospital started functioning on the same day for treatment of Covid-19 patients. Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr Sukumar Dey said that the new hospital has a bed capacity of 65.
"We have taken the decision to open a new covid positive designated hospital in the second floor of Balurghat Natya Utkarsha Kendra for the treatment of Corona positive patients. Around a month ago, we had converted it to an isolation centre and now it has been transformed as a complete hospital," he said. He added that the Health department has detected eight Covid-19 positive cases from Tapan. With the detection of the new cases, the total number of positive cases reached 34. All of them are migrant labourers and had recently returned here from the other states. They were rushed to Balurghat Covid hospital as soon as the reports were out. Their family members have been quarantined. "We need to open designated hospitals in the district as the number of positive patients increases. We had a meeting on Monday with the district administrative officials regarding the matter," he added.
As of now two such designated hospitals have been made operational with CCU facilities for both Balurghat and Gangarampur sub-divisions as part of the preparedness to deal with the pandemic. Steps are also being taken to ensure availability of medicines and equipment, personal protective gears and oxygen cylinders. Regarding testing of samples of suspected cases, TrueNat testing will soon be operational in Gangarampur. As per Indian Council of Medical Research guidelines, all positive samples should be subjected to confirmation by another step. All samples that test positive by the assay must be considered as true positive.
A health official said around 293 isolation centres covering eight blocks will start soon.