Bhubaneswar: Amid the unrelenting surge in COVID-19 cases, the Odisha government on Monday asked all private hospitals in major cities and towns to reserve 50 per cent of beds for coronavirus patients.
A notification in this regard was issued by the state health and family welfare department during the day, and the directives came into force with immediate effect, a senior official here said.
"All private hospitals having bed strength of 30 or above, located in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Sambalpur, Berhampur and Rourkela Municipal Corporation limits shall mandatorily designate minimum 50 per cent of their general beds and 80 percent of ICUs for treatment of COVID positive patients, with an option to convert the centre hospital as a COVID hospital," the notification said.
It further asked the hospitals to strictly abide by the rate chart prepared by the government for the various facilities and services provided by them.
Official sources said that the decision was taken in view of the spike in coronavirus cases, which climbed to 1,55,005 on Monday.
"An estimation made by experts indicates that Odisha's caseload is likely to cross the two-lakh mark by the end of September," the senior official said.
Meanwhile, in a related development, the government has asked all district collectors and commissioners to shut those COVID care centres (CCCs), COVID Care Homes (CCHs) and Temporary Medical Centres (TMCs) which have zero occupancy.
The state government had opened the TMCs in all the gram panchayats of Odisha to isolate the migrant workers, following their return from different states.
As the migrant influx has stopped, there was no need to operate the TMCs any longer, the official said.
Similarly, CCCs and CCHs are also witnessing zero occupancy as the government has allowed home isolation.
Additional Chief Secretary PK Mohapatra, in his letter to collectors and municipal corporation commissioners, said, "CCCs should be closed if there is no patient, or operations might be scaled down in case of low occupancy."
The health personnel, engaged in these centres, can be redeployed in districts, where their services will be better utilized, Mohapatra added.