BMC to start Covid-19 treatment in central government hospitals

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The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) authorities are set to convert five central government-run hospitals that are covered under the Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) scheme in Mumbai as dedicated coronavirus disease (Covid-19) facilities amid a daily spike in the positive cases.

The civic body plans to add 1,000 beds for Covid-19 patients in these five ESIC hospitals, including reserving 300 beds, or 30% of the total capacity, for intensive care units (ICUs).

“We’re adding another 1,000 beds by converting these five ESIC hospitals into dedicated Covid-19 facilities. Beds at isolation wards and ICUs will be 70% and 30%, respectively. Covid-19 patients are already undergoing treatment at the Mahatma Gandhi Hospital in Parel, an ESIC facility. The Kandivali hospital has 300 beds, which will help the treatment of Covid-19 patients living in suburban Mumbai,” said Suresh Kakani, additional commissioner, BMC.

The ESIC hospitals are located in Mumbai’s Worli, Parel, Kandivali, Andheri and Mulund.

Mumbai, which has reported over 50,000 Covid-19 positive cases and more than 1,750 deaths, is overwhelmed, as all BMC-run and private hospitals are fast running out of beds for critically-ill Covid-19 patients.

Latest BMC data showed that around 97% of the beds in ICUs are occupied by Covid-19 patients, who are suffering from a severe difficulty in breathing.

Currently, Mumbai has five Covid-19 dedicated hospitals --- BYL Nair, Seven Hills, Kasturba Gandhi, St George, and GT Hospital.

Except Seven Hills, which is located at Marol in Andheri (East), the other four hospitals are situated in south Mumbai.

The new dedicated Covid-19 facilities at Kandivali and Mulund will help the treatment of Covid-19 patients living in suburban Mumbai.

The central government had invested Rs 180 crore in the Kandivali facility, which was inaugurated in 2015, but became operational only last year.

The Marol hospital has been lying dysfunctional since a fire broke out two years ago and 11 people died in the accident, including patients.

ESIC hospitals come under the Union Ministry of Labour & Employment and central government employees are eligible for free treatment at these facilities.

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