Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa on Thursday cautioned people that the COVID-19 pandemic will last many months and sought public support in the fight against the virus.
"Let us together control coronavirus. This is not a one or two days' affair. We may have to face the problem for many months," the Chief Minister told reporters after inspecting the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre on Tumakuru Road, which has been converted into a COVID care centre with 10,100 beds and claimed to be the country's largest.
The centre has been developed in view of the rising coronavirus cases in the city at an alarming proportion.
Allaying public fears in view of the surging infections in Bengaluru, the Chief Minister said his government is taking all measures to control the spread of the disease in the state as well as Bengaluru. The government is quickly rectifying the shortcomings the moment they come to notice, he added. Yediyurappa underlined that a centralised and transparent bed allotment system has been put in place and a helpline has been set up in Bengaluru.
Stating that people should not lose their trust in the government, the Chief Minister appealed to the people to report to him or his ministers if there is any delay in an ambulance reaching a spot on time or hospitals denying admission to the patients.
The Chief Minister appealed to the migrant labourers from Karnataka working in Bengaluru not to migrate to rural areas. "There is no need to unnecessarily migrate from Bengaluru to villages. I request people not to migrate to the villages. It is necessary to prevent the spread of the disease in the villages," Yediyurappa said.
Speaking about the COVID care centre at the BIEC, the Chief Minister said it would be ready for operation in a week. He, however, pointed out that this facility will be kept reserved and will be used only when all the beds in the city hospitals are full. According to the Chief Minister, only asymptomatic infected persons or people with mild COVID-19 symptoms will be treated here. "Our effort is that every 100 patients will have a doctor, two nurses, two attendants, a sanitation worker, police and two BBMP marshals will be deployed. In all, 2,200 personnel will be deployed there," the chief minister said.
The doctors and paramedics at the COVID care centre will be provided safety and security. There will be trauma care, ICU, ECG, oxygen support and pharmacy.
Yediyurappa said the government has tied up with nearby hospitals to treat cases in case of any emergency. There will also be a control room to monitor the activities in the centre.
To a question on private hospitals overcharging patients, Yediyurappa said he had told private hospital owners during his meetings with them that they should avoid doing so and in case complaints are received, action would be taken.