NEW DELHI: As the operational costs mount and pending hotel bills for lodging healthcare workers cross Rs 1 crore, North Delhi Municipal Corporation will review the continuation of Hindu Rao Hospital as a dedicated Covid facility. Corporation officals say that the presence of Covid patients has been low all through the month, with more than 90% beds lying vacant. There has been growing demand to start normal services as well.
Mayor Jai Prakash said that Disaster Management Authority (DMA) and Delhi government will take the final call on the issue on Friday. “We will prepare a report on the issue along with senior doctors and heads of department and then send it to DMA for the final decision,” said Prakash. “The patients may not be coming to the hospital, but our expenses keep running.”
The cash-strapped municipal body is planning to send the lodging of Rs 1 crore to Delhi government. “Delhi government should foot the lodging bill. Their hospitals are also lying vacant but the expenses are continuing,” the mayor added.
To minimize the risk of spreading infection, the municipal body had decided to book hotel rooms for its healthcare workers in two hotels. A corporation official said that while doctors are staying in a hotel in Connaught Place, other healthcare workers have been lodged in a hotel in Karol Bagh. “It was a necessary measure but the under the current circumstances, the expenses are disproportionate to the number of patients at the hospital,” an official remarked. “The daily lodging bill is around Rs 6 lakh. The overall bill in the last 18 days has crossed Rs 1 crore,” he added.
While the municipal corporation had earlier decided to shift some of its doctors to other healthcare facilities to share the workload, a senior doctor said that only 10 out of 250 doctors were shifted to Kasturba Gandhi maternity hospital along with 20 nurses.
The latest occupancy report from the Hindu Rao Hospital shows that it is currently providing medical care to 19 Covid patients, out of which 7 are on oxygen support. The report shows that 304 beds have been dedicated to run the Covid facility, but the facility has only seen a total of 48 admissions till now. Out of the total number, 28 have been discharged after recovery and four deaths have occurred. The hospital has also seen four cases of leave against medical advice (LAMA).

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