Increase number of beds, ventilators for Covid-19 patients: HC to Delhi govt

13 June, 2020 | Priyanka Sharma

Coronavirus India National

The Delhi government had earlier submitted that there were 9,179 beds for Covid-19 patients in the city till June 9. Out of which, 4,914 were occupied and remaining were available for the new patie...

The Delhi High Court has directed the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led government to increase the number of beds and ventilators for COVID-19 patients in the hospitals. “Considering the gravity of the situation, we hereby direct the respondents (Centre and Delhi government) to increase the number of the beds for COVID-19 patients and also try to increase the number of ventilators so that all COVID patients in need can get this facility,” the court said.

A division bench of Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan said that the bench is expecting that the Delhi government shall scrupulously follow the guidance, directions, and the guidelines issued by the Central government. The bench, in an order on Thursday, said that it also expects all the hospitals in Delhi to correctly upload the availability of “real-time bed capacity data” so that the public may know in advance where to go if they are suffering from coronavirus.

“We also direct the concerned respondent authorities to look into the suggestions given by the Delhi Medical Association (DMA) vide their press release dated 06.06.2020. These suggestions may also be kept in mind whenever the respondents are formulating their policy decisions,” the order said.

After the bench issued directions, the Delhi government submitted that till June 9 there were 9,179 beds for COVID-19 patients in the city and out of that 4,914 were occupied and remaining were available for the new patients. Similarly, total 569 ventilators are available out of which 315 are being utilised and remaining are available, Delhi government’s counsel said.

The high court was hearing a petition, filed by one Hemant Singh through his advocate Mridul Chakravarty, seeking directions to Delhi government for ensuring the availability of an adequate number of beds in the private as well as government hospitals and provide the adequate facility for admission of persons requiring treatment for COVID-19. Singh, in his plea, had also sought to implement the suggestions provided by the DMA.

“A suggestion has been given by Mridul Chakravarty, counsel for the petitioner and we also appreciate the suggestion that there are ‘ready to move in’ government flats available in the city of Delhi, which may be utilised by the COVID hospitals for putting such infrastructure like beds, etc to accommodate COVID patients,” the court noted.

The high court observed that the suggestion will be kept in mind by the concerned respondent authorities as and when they are formulating or amending their policy decisions. If any further grievances are to be ventilated by the petitioners then they may prefer a fresh representation to the concerned respondent authorities and the same will be decided in accordance with law, rules, regulations, and government policy applicable, the court observed while disposing of the petition.

The counsel of the Delhi government, on the hand, told the court that they are strictly following all the guidelines and directions of the Central government as well as by other competent bodies and similarly are also strictly observing due compliance of the directions issued by the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi.