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TelanganaTelangana ramps up health infra

Telangana ramps up health infra

Published: 17th Apr 2021 11:36 pm | Updated: 18th Apr 2021 12:45 am

Hyderabad: From additional hospital beds, life-saving drugs, oxygen and adequate manpower, the State government has made all arrangements to provide ample healthcare support to Covid-19 patients even if the active caseload soared to one lakh.

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During the first Covid-19 wave, till September 3 last year, there were 18,232 beds (government and private) available to manage Covid-19 patients with a bed occupancy ratio of 40 per cent. As on April 16, the overall number of beds has been increased to 38,752, and will be augmented to 53,556 beds in the coming days.

To treat Covid-19 patients, there are 116 government hospitals across the State and five exclusive Covid designated hospitals in Hyderabad. During the first wave, there were 240 private hospitals to provide treatment to positive patients. Now, with the second wave raging on, the government has permitted 1,938 private hospitals, including those with 10 beds, to treat Covid-19 patients across the State.

The additional private hospitals are equipped with 5,000 oxygen beds, 1,500 ICU beds and another 1,500 beds with ventilator support.

“Patients and their families must realise that we have decentralised Covid healthcare services and they don’t have to rush to Hyderabad for everything. There are only 15 to 20 bigger private hospitals in Hyderabad that are facing a shortage of beds. We have observed that the moment a person tests positive, their family members, without even consulting a physician, rush to hospitals in search of a bed. Let general physicians take a call on admission based on the condition of the patient,” Director of Public Health (DPH) Dr G Srinivasa Rao said.

Not everybody would require hospital admission. “Say there are 100 Covid-19 patients, out of which 80 per cent will be asymptomatic and they don’t need treatment at all. Another 10 per cent will be mild cases and they can be treated at home or in Covid Care Centres. The remaining 10 per cent fall under moderate and severe categories, which may need hospitalisation and we have enough hospital beds across Telangana for this category,” Dr Rao said.

To provide healthcare services to positive cases with mild symptoms, apart from those in home isolation, there are 44 Covid Care Centres with 5,000 beds.

Remdesivir is not a magic bullet

The broad-based anti-viral drug Remdesivir, which is in huge demand following the surge of Covid infections across the country, is not a magic bullet that can treat all Covid cases. There is a need to encourage rational use of this drug among general public and private hospitals, health authorities said here on Saturday.

“Patients and the public must realise that Remdesivir is purely an experimental or a trial drug. If you recall, during the first Covid wave, a high-powered steroid Tocilizumab was administered irrationally to a large number of Covid positive patients. Several of them suffered due to the use of this drug. I would warn the public that they are committing the same mistake with Remdesivir, which is not meant for all Covid patients,” said Director of Public Health (DPH) Dr G Srinivasa Rao.

There is a specific treatment protocol framed by WHO and MOHFW to administer a drug like Remdesivir to positive patients. The Remdesivir injection is not meant for asymptomatic and mild Covid positive patients and only moderate patients can be administered. There are only 2 to 3 per cent or at the most 5 per cent of Covid patients needing Remdesivir. At present, government hospitals have nearly 20,000 doses of Remdesivir injections (each patient needing at least 6 to 7 injections) while two lakh doses are expected to arrive in the coming days.

Also read:

Covid-19: People failed to learn from experience

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