Official sources said that of the 1,200 beds in the hospital, 550 have been allocated for COVID care and 350 of them have oxygen support facilities. A senior health official told DT Next, “we plan to add another 400 beds by providing them with oxygen connections as early as possible.”
Asked how this would be done, the official said “beds in all wards, except those in labour and gynaecology, would be diverted for this purpose. The PWD has been tasked with the work and they have also been asked to provide an additional oxygen cylinder to meet the extra load.”
Vellore Medical College Hospital Dean Dr Selvi said the additional infrastructure might take a minimum of one-and-a-half months to be completed as PWD would have to source the necessary materials which could be a problem due to the lockdown.
However, a sense of urgency has gripped the institution after a nurse, Prabha (52), working in the hospital’s COVID ward succumbed to the virus on Sunday morning.
Officials said that new cases were slowly coming down from 614 on May 6 to 582 on May 7 and 574 on May 8.
The hospital has also constructed a huge shed inside the premises to house around 50 beds for COVID patients following complaints that due to lack of beds patients were being made to wait in ambulances thereby denying the latter’s services for those in real need.