The Arvind Kejriwal government on Friday claimed that there is no shortage of beds for coronavirus patients in Delhi and that nearly 5,000 were available.
However, relatives of several patients told Scroll.in that they had been unable to get beds in hospitals across the national Capital as authorities cited a shortage. They also said that the information on the “Delhi Corona” app – meant to display the availability of beds at both private and government hospitals in the city – does not tally with position on the ground.
“There are some misleading reports that there is shortage of beds for corona patients in Delhi because a few private hospitals are refusing admissions,” Health Minister Satyendar Jain said in a statement. “The truth is, there is absolutely no shortage of beds in Delhi at the moment. In the last three days, more than 1,000 patients have been admitted to various hospitals. If beds were not available, this would have not been possible.”
Jain added that there are close to 5,000 vacant beds at present. He attributed the reports on shortage of beds to hospitals not updating the data on the mobile application on time or misrepresenting actual data when patients call.
“Patients were not getting data on hospitals before, which the app is trying to fix,” the health minister said. “We are making hospital bed data live and real-time soon.”
The government’s clarification came as the total cases in the city rose to 26,334 on Friday. Twenty-five deaths have also been reported in the past 24 hours, taking the total to 708. The health bulletin added that 417 people have recovered, taking the total number of recoveries to 10,315. There are currently 15,311 active cases in Delhi.
On Tuesday, The Aam Aadmi Party had issued new guidelines limiting who can get tested for Covid-19. According to the order, the new testing strategy excludes asymptomatic patients from being tested except for those who have comorbidities or are senior citizens, These people will be tested once between day five and day 10 of having come in contact with an infected person.