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Covid-19 hospitalisations start to go up again in Bengaluru

On July 15 (Thursday), 32 patients were admitted into hospitals and Covid Care Centres (CCCs) and on Friday, 46 were admitted
Last Updated : 18 July 2021, 01:54 IST

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Bengaluru saw an increase in the number of Covid-19 hospital admissions over the last couple of days, suggesting the second wave is not yet over and cases could rise in the absence of Covid-appropriate behaviour.

The rate of daily hospital admissions has risen since July 14 as per data from the municipal war room, reversing a dip which had started since the start of June.

Over the course of 13 days from July 1, the number of daily Covid-19 admissions into hospitals plummeted by 63%. Admissions reached their lowest point between July 9 and 13, when about 25 patients a day were being admitted. However, on July 15 (Thursday), 32 patients were admitted into hospitals and Covid Care Centres (CCCs) and on Friday, 46 were admitted.

BBMP Special Commissioner (Health) D Randeep said several reasons are driving the increase: 100% physical triaging by municipal health officers and ensuring that people who need hospital care are immediately allocated a bed, better awareness by people to seek medical care and lastly, the discovery of several Covid-19 clusters.

“These clusters include nine cases from two families found in a migrant camp in Mahadevapura Zone and over 20 positives at an army base in Yelahanka,” Randeep explained, adding that nearly all new hospitalisations currently are for HDU (high dependency unit) beds.

The demand for HDU beds was corroborated by Dr Prasanna H M of the Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes’ Association (Phana) who said private hospitals have reported an increase in patient admissions. “We have had reports from our members of one to two new Covid-19 patients being admitted every day. Some hospitals are seeing up to 10 new admissions daily. This may not seem like a large number, but you have to remember that until last week, hospitals were seeing no new Covid-19 admissions at all,” he said.

He stressed it was too early to tell if the increases constitute the beginning of a surge. “At the least it tells us that we must keep our eye on the ball because the second wave may not yet be over,” he said.

Increase in mobility

A government officer, speaking off the record, confirmed that increased mobility after Unlock 2.0 is making it difficult to whittle down the case numbers to the levels seen in late-January and February, when only between 120 and 250 cases were being reported daily. “Our numbers are stuck at between 400 and 500,” the officer said.

There has been a “congealing” in the rate of decline of new Covid-19 cases. In 14 days from June 26 to July 9, the reduction of the number of cases was 28.7%. However, from July 10 to 16, the rate of decline slowed to 21.4%. The city has seen an average of 420 new Covid cases every day for the last nine days.

BBMP Chief Commissioner Gaurav Gupta said that to reduce the numbers, the civic body requires greater cooperation from the public.

“Just as people have to come forward for testing the moment they develop symptoms, we need the cooperation of the public to conduct contact tracing and other surveillance measures. The contact details of many primary and secondary contacts are either missing or erroneous,” Gupta said.

Micro containment zones

While Bengaluru had only 33 micro containment zones as of July 12, the number rose to 53 in just four days. D Randeep, BBMP Special Commissioner (Health), said this could be due to BBMP’s decision to reduce the threshold for enacting a containment zone. “Previously, areas with over five cases were declared containment zones. Now, to ensure there are no breakouts, we have reduced it to three,” he said.

Bommanahalli and Mahadevapura are the major contributors with 13 and 12 active micro containment zones respectively.

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Published 17 July 2021, 19:05 IST

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