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Centre to add more ICU beds, double RT-PCR tests to check rising COVID-19 cases in Delhi

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New Delhi: Amid the rising coronavirus cases in the national capital, the Centre has assured more ICU beds for COVID-19 patients, said Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal after a high-level meeting with Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday (November 15, 2020).

The meeting was held at the North Block and was attended by Delhi Lieutenant Governor (LG) Anil Baijal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, Delhi’s Health Minister Satyendra Jain and other senior officers.

Amit Shah who had earlier taken charge of the national capital in May, directed the following steps in order to check the rising COVID-19 cases in Delhi:

– The RT-PCR tests will be increased two-fold in Delhi.

– The mobile testing vans of the Health Ministry and ICMR will be deployed in the high-risk areas.

– The oxygen beds will be increased and 10,000-bedded Chhatarpur COVID care centre will be strengthened.

– Some MCD hospitals will be converted into dedicated COVID-19 hospitals for the treatment of patients with mild symptoms. 

– Multi-departmental teams will visit all private hospitals in Delhi to clearly indicate the availability of beds and medical conditions.

– All previously initiated containment measures will be reviewed that will include reviewing the establishment of COVID-19 containment zones, contact tracing, and quarantine and screening. Those who are at high risk of getting the virus will be constantly reviewed so that there is no shortage in implementing preventive measures.

– Centre will deploy additional doctors and paramedical staff from CAPF in view of the shortage of health workers in Delhi. They will be airlifted to Delhi at the earliest.

– People under home isolation will also be tracked and will be provided immediate help if required. 

– Protocols will be prepared for plasma donation in severe COVID-19 cases and for providing plasma to affected persons. 

– Centre will provide Delhi with oxygen cylinders, high flow nasal cannula and all other essential health equipment.

Earlier on November 2, a meeting convened by Union Home Secretary Ajay Kumar Bhalla had attributed the third surge in coronavirus cases in Delhi to festivals and a greater movement of people, accompanied by laxity in adhering to the basic principles of COVID-appropriate behaviour. However, Kejriwal last week blamed pollution for the spike in the cases.

Also read | Light rains lash Delhi-NCR, provide temporary respite from air pollution

Delhi that has been reportedly hit by COVID-19’s third wave witnessed over 7,000 cases on November 6, followed by record 8,593 cases on November 11.

Meanwhile, Delhi’s total COVID-19 tally has jumped to 4,85,405 after 3,235 new infections were recorded on Sunday.

Delhi has also seen 4,37,801 coronavirus recoveries, while 7,614 people have succumbed to the virus.

There are still 39,990 active COVID-19 cases across the national capital.

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