COVID: Citizens expose Telangana’s claim on bed availability

The government live dashboard shows that more than 6,000 are available in these hospitals.
Owing to the constantly changing rules regarding the gap to be followed between vaccine doses, several beneficiaries were turned away from Vanasthalipuram Area Hospital on Friday as they were told the
Owing to the constantly changing rules regarding the gap to be followed between vaccine doses, several beneficiaries were turned away from Vanasthalipuram Area Hospital on Friday as they were told the

HYDERABAD: The Telangana government’s live dashboard showing bed availability has yet again come under fire from citizens for having misleading “live” data. Independent research carried out by individuals, who have been helping people find beds, has found that more than 300 hospitals listed on the dashboard have no beds for Covid-19 treatment. 

The government live dashboard shows that more than 6,000 are available in these hospitals. However, the volunteers note that the majority of the beds don’t exist.“We observed that day after day there were a few hospitals with zero occupancy. We decided to compile them all and to give these hospitals a call to check if the beds were really available. When we randomly began calling, a majority of them were clueless as to how their hospitals were enlisted as a Covid-19 treating centre,” said Sai Mani Varun Ch, one of the volunteers. 

When Express called hospitals at random, a hospital in Jangaon said that while they had enlisted themselves to Covid-19 treatment initially, they had discontinued because of non-availability of oxygen. The live dashboard also displayed a maternity hospital from  Warangal  statimng that there were 10 beds available at their facility. But, when contacted, the hospital staff said that they had shut down the in-patient service several weeks ago.

“One of our teammates found one such hospital in Adilabad which was a hospital for gynaec issues. They said they even asked the DMHO for their number to be taken off the website, but to no avail. All these excess beds give an impression of bed availability,” he said.

The list of 300 hospitals consists of several fertility clinics, physiotherapy clinics, eye hospitals, hospitals for bone injury and so on, which have no specialists from general medicine, anesthesia or critical care to tackle Covid-19.  “How can a dental hospital or dialysis centre cater to Covid patients? The government must remove all fudged data and show the true numbers. It has to put sincere effort into adding more beds to teaching hospitals,” said BV Sheshagiri, an RTI activist.

Vaccination drive suspended for two days
Hyderabad: The State Health Department has suspended vaccine drive for Saturday and Sunday. The announcement was made by the Director of Public Health’s office on Friday evening. The decision was taken in the wake of the centre increasing the interval between first and second doses of Covishield from the present 6-8 weeks to 12-16 weeks. The Health Department said that the campaign will resume on Monday, May 16.

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