New Delhi: Twenty-five of the “sickest” COVID-19 patients have died at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi in the last 24 hours, and the lives of another 60 such patients are at risk, officials said on Friday, amid a serious oxygen crisis unfolding in the national capital.
“25 sickest patients have died in last 24 hours. Oxygen will last another two hours. Ventilators and BiPAP (ventilators for invasive treatment) not working effectively. Resorting to manual ventilation in ICUs and Emergency. Major crisis likely. Lives of another 60 sickest patients at risk, need urgent intervention,” NDTV quoted the hospital’s director (medical) as saying.
The hospital authorities are resorting to manual ventilation in ICUs and the emergency department, according to the official.
There are more than 500 coronavirus patients, including around 150 on high flow oxygen support, admitted in Sir Ganga Ram Hospital located in central Delhi.
On Thursday night, the hospital officials had sent an SOS to the government, saying there’s only five hours of oxygen left at the healthcare facility and requesting that it be replenished urgently.
“At 8 pm, oxygen in store is for five hours for peripheral use till 1 am and less for high flow use. Need urgent oxygen supplies,” an official had said.
The hospital had received some oxygen around 12:30 am, but the stock had to be supplemented later, sources said.
“A tanker carrying two tonnes of oxygen is stuck near Ambedkar Hospital,” a source said.
Several private hospitals in the city have been struggling to replenish their oxygen supply for the last four days.
Some of them have even requested the Delhi government to transfer patients to other healthcare facilities.
While some hospitals have managed to make short-term arrangements, there is no immediate end to the crisis in sight, a government official had said on Thursday.
In a letter to Union health minister Harsh Vardhan, deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said six private hospitals had exhausted their oxygen supply by Thursday evening.
Several private hospitals have approached the Delhi high court over the last week, which came down heavily on the Centre for not ensuring the quick delivery of live-saving oxygen in a time of crisis. “Why is the Centre not waking up to the gravity of the situation? We are shocked and dismayed hospitals are running out of oxygen but steel plants are running,” the high court said.
(With PTI inputs)