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Plea to streamline allocation of ventilator beds

Telangana could take a cue from Mumbai

Common people and volunteers have urged the State government to streamline the process of locating ventilator beds in hospitals. The plea has been echoing even as several people share their day-to-day ordeal of making arrangements for beds, oxygen and drugs for a family member or friend on social media platforms.

The problems involved in finding a bed becomes accentuated if a COVID-19 patient’s condition worsens at night. As the number of severe cases increases, the demand for ventilator beds is poised to further rise.

Adding to their woes is the fact that the phone numbers of a few government and private hospitals provided on the government website — health.telangana.gov.in — are wrong. What’s more, helpline numbers of two major government hospitals in Hyderabad provided are actually the numbers of their respective faculty members.

In such a scenario, Telangana could take a cue from the capital of neighbouring State, Maharashtra, in streamlining allocation of ventilator beds. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation mentioned on Twitter that ward war rooms are the only authority to allocate COVID beds in Mumbai. “Bed allocation system was decentralised since a single helpline, with innumerable calls, could not have taken the load alone & it would only increase wait time for citizens. If a War Room does not respond as per need, escalate complaint to 1916 (sic),” the tweet read.

Some exceptional cases or serious patients can approach the municipal corporation, government or private health facilities for a bed by furnishing a COVID-positive report.

Such a system in Telangana could also help patients from slipping into severe complications and reduce the anxiety of helpless family members.

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