The Delhi government on Tuesday directed all private hospitals and nursing homes in the national capital with 50 beds or more to reserve at least 40 per cent of their total bed capacity for coronavirus disease (Covid-19) patients. The directorate general of health services in its order cited the high transmissibility of Omicron variant of coronavirus and exponential rise in new infections.
“The keepers of all private hospitals/nursing homes having total bed capacity of 50 beds or more are directed to reserve at least 40% of their total bed capacity (i.e. 40% of Ward Bed capacity and 40% of ICU bed capacity) for COVID patients,” the order read.
As daily Covid cases witnessed a decline in June last year, the Delhi government allowed all private hospitals and nursing homes with a total bed capacity of 100 beds or more to reduce their reserve capacity for Covid oxygenated beds to 30% of their total bed capacity.
In view of rising cases of vector-borne diseases like dengue and malaria in October last year, the government allowed those private hospitals and nursing homes to further reduce their reserve capacity for Covid oxygenated beds to 10% of their total bed capacity.
The fresh order related to reserve beds after an upsurge of Covid cases in Delhi in the past four days as the positivity rate rose from 2.44% on December 31, 2021, to more than 8% on January 4, 2022. On Tuesday, the Delhi government imposed fresh curbs, including a weekend curfew in the national capital to contain the virus. Delhi health minister Satyendra Jain said the weekend curfew being imposed in view of rising Covid cases should not be considered a lockdown.