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3rd wave preparation: Hospitals bank upon Oxygen plants, ICU beds to deal impending crisis

The Statesman logo The Statesman 01-08-2021 Ashish Srivastava
graphical user interface: 3rd wave preparation: Hospitals bank upon Oxygen plants, ICU beds to deal impending crisis © Provided by The Statesman 3rd wave preparation: Hospitals bank upon Oxygen plants, ICU beds to deal impending crisis

The Covid-19, particularly the second wave, exposed the shabby state of health infrastructure India has been carrying. The whole health system crumbled under the Covid-19 pandemic while its gigantic second wave made the whole health infrastructure collapse.

Lakhs of people died in dearth of medical facilities, shortage of life-saving oxygen and drugs. However, the tragedy has left a plethora of learning to counter the impending third wave.

The hospitals in the national capital are gearing up for the fight and their weapons seem to be the facilities that witnessed extreme shortage amid the second wave—Oxygen and ICU beds.

Key hospitals run by the Delhi government have been installing PSA oxygen generation plants at the hospital premises. Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital (RGSSH) has installed 2 PSA plants while two more are in the pipeline.

“We have installed two plants, each having a capacity to generate 500 litres of oxygen in a minute. Two more plants with a capacity of 1,000 litres each of oxygen generation in a minute,” Dr BL Sherwal, director of the hospital, informed The Statesman.

Besides, the hospital has also turned its holding area into an ICU unit and named it a ‘rapid response centre’.

It is one of a kind initiative where the ambulance can drive in direct inside the facility and the treatment of the critical patients can start right there,” he said while explaining the initiative.

Tirath Ram Shah Charitable Hospital has also installed a new PSA oxygen generating plant with a combined capacity of 20 cubic meters per hour which translates into 300 litres of oxygen generation in a minute.

“This oxygen generation plant can generate on-demand oxygen by taking in atmospheric air and producing medical grade oxygen in quick and simple steps,” Dr Shilpa Pandita, Medical Superintendent of Tirath Ram Shah said.

She noted that regular and quick availability of medical-grade oxygen to all health care facilities is the need of the hour.

“The second wave of COVID-19 had highlighted the weakness in the supply system of medical grade oxygen. Regular and quick availability of medical-grade oxygen to all health care facilities was the need of the hour,” Dr Pandita added.

Meanwhile, the Delhi government has focused more on the medical facilities, which fell short during the second wave of Covid-19. The state government has a prepared action plan and roadmap to avert the impending third wave.

The preparations include State Level Task Force, increase in the number of health workers, Paediatric Task Force for the treatment of children, development of PSA Oxygen Plants, Cryogenic Bottling Plants, MLO Storage Plants etc.

The roadmap includes oxygen and bed management in hospitals, arranging medicines and rapid completion of vaccinations.

Also, the Delhi government has so far started two of its Genome Sequencing Labs in Delhi. One of these labs is in Loknayak Hospital and the other is in the Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences (ILBS).

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