Karnataka has received nearly 3,000 ventilators from the Union government to treat COVID-19 patients in hospitals across the state, an official said on Sunday. An official statement from Chief Minister BS Yediyurappaâ€™s office said that the state received 2,913 ventilators from the Union government. While 2,025 were received during phase 1, the government received 888 in phase 2. The statement said that the ventilators received in phase 1 have been installed in district hospitals (578), state-run medical colleges (574), taluk hospitals (708), composite healthcare centres (24) and private hospitals (141). Of the 888 ventilators received in the second phase, 712 have been installed while the government will utilise the remaining 176 as per need.
The state government was responding to reports that over 50% of the ventilators received from the Union government were lying unused. The Times of India reported that around 1,800 ventilators were lying idle in hospitals due to lack of skilled staff and technicians to operate them. According to the statement, each taluk hospital has been given 50 oxygenated beds and six ventilators for the ICUs after the pandemicâ€™s first wave.
Technical snags were detected in some ventilators installed in the hospitals, the statement said and further added that the staff was given helplines of the vendors for servicing the machines at any time. The official added that the staff of hospitals are given a demo of the machine, which enables them to identify snags.
The state Health Department has also supplied ventilators to private hospitals since they were directed to reserve 80% of their beds to treat COVID-19 patients referred by the government. In a corresponding development, Bengaluru-based German auto-component major Bosch has offered to repair ventilators in COVID-19 hospitals free of cost, Deputy Chief Minister CN Ashwathnarayan said. The Vice President of Bosch Ramesh Saligrama said that the ventilators will be repaired as a part of their corporate social responsibility.
Meanwhile, maintaining a downward trend, new COVID-19 cases declined to 20,378 in a day across Karnataka, and 382 succumbed to the infection, said the state health bulletin on Sunday. Bengaluru reported 4,734 fresh cases on Saturday, taking its COVID-19 tally to 11.59 lakh, including 1.62 lakh active cases. Districts where over 1,000 new cases were reported on Saturday are 2,227 in Hassan, 1,559 in Mysuru and 1,171 in Belagavi, with the rest spread in the remaining 27 districts across the state.