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Monday, August 03, 2020

Delhi government set to delink hotels from hospitals

In the first week of this month, the Southwest district administration had passed orders to delink three hotels from hospitals after they got only three-four patients.

Written by Astha Saxena | New Delhi | Published: July 29, 2020 3:33:32 am
Delhi government set to delink hotels from hospitals Covid testing in progress at a construction site in Central Delhi. (Express Photo by Prem Nath Pandey)

Hotels that had been attached to hospitals to increase bed capacity for Covid patients might be delinked, after they saw only a handful of patients for close to a month now. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will hold a meeting with senior officials to discuss the possibility on Wednesday.

In the first week of this month, the Southwest district administration had passed orders to delink three hotels from hospitals after they got only three-four patients. The hotels had set aside around 600 beds for patients. The order was later revoked and similar requests made by other hotels and district administrations were rejected. Sources said now that the situation in Delhi seems to be under control, the hotels could be delinked.

On Tuesday, the city recorded 1,056 fresh cases, taking the tally to 1,32,275. The death toll climbed to 3,881 with 28 more fatalities reported in the last 24 hours.

Delhi, officials said, was also looking to restart economic activity in all sectors based on broad guidelines from the Centre. At present, hotels are not allowed to open, except select ones accommodating people travelling from other countries and assigned mandatory quarantine.

After panic spread through the city during the first two-three weeks in June and some people died after being denied treatment at hospitals, hotels were linked to hospitals while small clinics and nursing homes were ordered to admit Covid patients. Around 40 hotels were linked to hospitals. At present, almost none have any admissions.

Over the past month, admissions at hospitals have been dipping — of the 16,038 beds, 12,996 are unoccupied.

The number of deaths has also dipped. Where approximately 73 people died per day in the second week of June, this number dipped to 28 in the week that ended on July 26.

Several government hospitals have also been witnessing days with no death being reported — many of them for the first time in at least two months.

Delhi government’s biggest Covid hospital, Lok Nayak, did not report a single death for 24 hours till Tuesday evening.
Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality hospital did not report a single death on four consecutive days, between July 24 and July 27. Similarly, the Centre-run RML hospital did not report any deaths on July 27.

“Over the last three-four months, this is the first time that not a single Covid death has been reported from the hospital. This is a clear indication that the curve has begun to flatten in Delhi. Even on Monday, we had 45 admissions as compared to days when hundreds were getting admitted,” Dr Suresh Kumar, medical director of Lok Nayak hospital, told The Indian Express.

“The fatality rate has gone down significantly in Delhi; two-three deaths on an average are being reported now. Bed occupancy rate has also come down to almost 50%,” said Dr DK Sharma, the AIIMS medical superintendent.

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