KOCHI: The Ernakulam district administration, in association with the BPCL, is constructing the biggest temporary Covid treatment facility with oxygen support at Ambalamugal. The facility will be ready by Thursday, said Collector S Suhas, who reviewed the progress along with BPCL chief Mnanager Kurian Alappatt on Tuesday.
A facility with 500 oxygen beds is being arranged at the old refinery school building at Ambalamugal, while a temporary structure with 1,000 oxygen beds is being constructed at the Ambalamugal Refinery School ground. This will be the biggest temporary Covid treatment facility with oxygen support in the country, said Suhas.
Though the district has 1,911 vacant beds for Covid treatment, the administration is arranging more facilities considering the rapid spread of the disease. According to authorities, the test positivity rate has crossed 50% in 19 panchayats of the district. There are 65,284 active cases in the district and 4,514 fresh cases were reported on Tuesday. Among them, 14 are health workers. The health department is planning to recruit more doctors and nurses from the private sector to meet the shortage of health workers.
“The advantage of the facility at Ambalamugal is that we will be getting oxygen supply from BPCL and all the 1,500 beds will have oxygen support. It is a peripheral field hospital and we are trying to get more doctors and nurses from the private sector to be deployed in these first-line treatment centres (FLTCs). Government doctors will be in charge of the facility,” said district medical officer Dr N K Kuttappan.
“We will need around 1,000 nurses and 200 doctors to take care of the patients admitted to the temporary Covid care centres. We have urged doctors and nurses in the private sector to join the health department to tide over the situation. We will be admitting patients with breathing difficulty at Ambalamugal facility. Around 90% of the patients may recover with oxygen support.
Those with complications will be shifted to hospitals with an intensive care facility,” said National Health Mission district programme officer Dr Mathews Numpeli. The district administration has arranged 30 domiciliary care centres. As many as 337 patients have been admitted to these facilities and there are 1,114 vacant beds. There are 1,989 patients admitted to the 3,900 beds arranged additionally to treat Covid patients.
BPCL and TCS have arranged FLTCs for their employees and there are 32 patients at these facilities. The health department has arranged 10 FLTCs with 884 beds. There are 393 patients in these facilities and 459 vacant beds are available. In the 11 Covid second-line treatment centres there are 590 beds of which 460 are occupied. The patients belonging to category B are admitted to these facilities which have oxygen beds.
Covid treatment facilities in district
Total beds arranged for Covid patients: 3,900
Vacant beds: 1,911
Domiciliary care centres: 30
No of beds: 1,451
No of beds: 590
Govt Hospitals: 13
No of beds: 975
Facilities being built at BPCL Ambalamugal: 2
No of oxygen beds: 1,500