Patients with comorbidities in Kerala end up in hospitals as COVID heads towards peak

Those with comorbidities, including cardiac, cancer, liver and kidney complications, are among the most vulnerable to develop severe illnesses.
For representational purposes (Photo | PTI)
For representational purposes (Photo | PTI)

KOCHI: With the third wave of COVID heading towards the peak, the rate of hospitalisation too is rising rapidly. As ICU occupancy increases steadily in the state, health experts point out that a large majority of the beds are occupied by those with comorbidities. In many cases, despite testing negative for COVID, complications due to pre-existing conditions are landing people in ICUs.

"Since last week, hospital admissions and ICU occupancy have gone up in the state. Compared to government hospitals, private hospitals are finding it difficult to admit COVID patients. At present, we assume that the surge in COVID cases is dominated by the Omicron variant. Even then, people with underlying comorbidities are at high risk," said Dr James G, a Kollam-based cardiologist.

Those with comorbidities, including cardiac, cancer, liver and kidney complications, are among the most vulnerable to develop severe illnesses. "COVID-related ICU admissions also include those requiring surgeries and accident cases where patients test positive," said Dr Monu Varghese, a pulmonologist in Kochi.

According to the health department, only 3 per cent of the 2.23 lakh active cases is hospitalised. On Friday, 1,139 COVID patients got admitted to various hospitals in the state. Of this, 919 are in ICU and 210 on ventilator support.

"Though the risk is high among those with comorbidities, that does not mean that COVID cannot have an impact on youngsters. Health workers and elderly people with comorbidities also belong to the high-risk category. But we cannot predict the virus and its variants. Therefore, COVID protocol must be ensured by all irrespective of age and ailments," said a health official.

Halth department officials are tasked to evaluate the hospital admissions in their respective districts and submit a report to the Disaster Management Authority. Based on the number of admissions, treatment facilities will be increased in districts.

Former CM VS Achuthanandan​'s health condition improving, says son

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The health condition of former chief minister and CPM veteran VS Achuthanandan who is undergoing treatment at a private hospital following COVID infection has improved, said his son V A Arun Kumar.

In a Facebook post on Saturday, Arun said that there is progress in Achuthanandan's condition and he is still in the hospital. Meanwhile, Achuthanandan’s wife K Vasumathy also tested positive for COVID on Friday. It was on Thursday night that Achuthanandan tested positive. Following this, the 98-year-old leader was shifted to a private hospital.

COVID spreads in Thiruvananthapuram central jail

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: As many as 239 inmates of the Central Prison at Poojappura have been tested positive for COVID. None of the prisoners have serious symptoms and a medical team is attending to them, according to NS Nirmalanandan Nair, superintendent of the central prison.

The prisoners were tested in batches beginning Tuesday and the infected are being shifted to a separate block everyday. "The medical team at the prison, including two doctors, are attending to them. The health department has deputed two nurses in the wake of the pandemic spread," the superintendent told The New Indian Express.

All the 966 inmates of the prison housed in 12 blocks were subjected to antigen test. The infected persons include remand prisoners. They are given a special diet including egg, milk and fruits rich in Vitamin C.

About 600 inmates of the prison were infected during the first wave and less than 200 in the second wave. Three inmates are being treated for COVID at the Women's Jail at Attakulangara. Superintendent Sophia Beevi said all of them are recuperating under the treatment of the jail medical team. Two of them were infected at the time of their admission to the jail on Friday, she said.

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