Outgoing Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) Commissioner Manjunath Prasad on Wednesday said that private hospitals in Bengaluru have to set aside 10% of the beds for COVID-19 cases. This will be increased in phases depending on the caseload, Manjunath Prasad said in a video conference with private hospitals in the city.
He said that during the peak of the pandemic in 2020, private hospitals had set aside as much as 50% of the beds for COVID-19, before this quota was reduced as cases dropped. He said that from an average of 333 daily cases in January to 243 in February, it had shot up to 1500 in March. He said asking private hospitals to pitch in was now inevitable, The Hindu reported.
COVID-19 wards in major Bengaluru hospitals are nearly full, as per a report by Times of India. At Victoria Hospital, 150 of the 162 beds are occupied while 89 of the 100 beds in MS Ramaiah Medical College are occupied. At Apollo Hospital on Bannerghatta Road, there are currently 42 COVID-19 patients and the hospital is looking to increase the bed availability.
Manjunath Prasad added that COVID-19 patients, particularly with respiratory issues, should not be turned away by any hospital. He also asked hospitals to display bed availability on notice boards. Manjunath Prasad was replaced as BBMP Commissioner by IAS officer Gaurav Gupta on Wednesday. Manjunath Prasad will now be the Principal Secretary to the Revenue Department.
Registering a sharp spike in daily infections, Karnataka on Wednesday reported 4,225 new cases of COVID-19 and 26 more fatalities, taking the total number of infections to 9.97 lakh and the death toll to 12,567, the Health department said.
Bengaluru also saw a spike in daily figures as it reported 2,928 COVID-19 cases on Wednesday.