Karnataka on Wednesday urged the Central government to rush 1,500 tonne of medical oxygen daily to the state for treating Covid patients in state-run and private hospitals.
“Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa has written to the Centre to supply 1,500 tonne of medical oxygen daily to overcome its shortage in our hospitals where demand for the gas been rising due to surge in Covid cases,” state Health Minister K. Sudhakar told reporters here.
Hoping for an early response from the Centre, he said though 300 tonnes of oxygen has been allotted to the state, the need had doubled due to the surge in cases.
“We need about 600 tonnes of oxygen daily this month and 1,500 tonne in May as Covid cases are expected to peak in the coming weeks,” he said.
Referring to anxiety among the people to get admitted to hospital soon after they test Covid positive, the minister said 95 per cent of the cases does not require hospitalisation, as they can be quarantined at home and treated for mild symptoms.
“Patients with mild symptoms or asymptomatic can be isolated at home or in hotels and Covid care centres, set up in cities and towns across the state. Our doctors are visiting home-isolated patients to counsel them on treatment. Only patients with severe symptoms or comorbidities need to be admitted in hospitals, as they require oxygen or ventilator and care,” said Sudhakar.
According to the state health bulletin, a record 23,558 new cases were registered in a day, taking the state’s Covid tally to 12,22,202, including 1,76,188 active cases.
The infection claimed 116 lives across the state, taking the death toll to 13,762.
Allaying fears about shortage of beds for admitting severe Covid patients, the minister said 1,400 beds have been reserved in private medical colleges in Bengaluru for admitting serious cases on priority.
“In all, 9,851 beds in state-run and private hospitals across the state have been earmarked for treating severe Covid patients. Though positivity rate rose to 15.47 per cent, case fatality rate was 0.49 per cent on Tuesday,” he said.