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Delhi govt directs pvt hospitals to reserve 20 pc beds for COVID-19 patients; No mandatory quarantine for asymptomatic air passengers


Press Trust of India New Delhi
The Delhi government on Sunday directed private hospitals and nursing homes with 50 beds or more to reserve 20 per cent of their total capacity for COVID-19 patients as the number of infections climbed to 13,418 with 508 new cases in a day in the national capital, while the death toll rose to 261.
With domestic flights resuming on Monday after a two-month gap due to the coronavirus lockdown, officials said asymptomatic passengers coming to Delhi through such flights will not be kept at paid quarantine or state-run centres.
In its order, the Delhi government has directed the officials concerned to ensure compliance of guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in "letter and spirit".
Thermal screening at exit point shall be arranged and asymptomatic passengers will be permitted to go with the advice that they shall self-monitor their health for 14 days, the guidelines said.
Those found symptomatic will be isolated and taken to the nearest health facility and will be assessed for clinical severity at the health facility, they said.
The Centre has said that states can also develop their own protocol with regards to quarantine and isolation of air passengers on arrival as per their assessment.
The Tihar Prison reported its first coronavirus case after a 45-year Assistant Superintendent of Central Jail No 7 tested positive for the infection on Sunday.
The Assistant Superintendent is posted at Jail No 7 and is a resident of Staff Residential Complex, Tihar jail, they said.
Out of total 13,418 COVID-19 cases, 6,540 patients have recovered while 261 have died. According to an official, there are 87 containment zones in the national capital.
On Saturday, the number of coronavirus cases in the city was 12,910 with 231 fatalities.
With the number of cases rising daily, ten private hospitals in the city have been declared as COVID-19 dedicated hospitals for admitting confirmed/ suspected cases of coronavirus on payment basis.
"It has been found that in the recent past the majority of beds earmarked for COVID-19 patients in the dedicated private hospitals are occupied at any given time. Therefore, there is a need to increase the number of beds dedicated for COVID-19 patients in the private hospitals in the city," an order issued by the government said on Sunday.
To increase the bed capacity for COVID-19 patients, all 117 nursing homes/private hospitals having bed strength of 50 beds or more are directed to reserve/ earmark at least 20 per cent of their total bed strength for COVID-19 patients, it added.
On Sunday, the festive atmosphere was missing on the eve of Eid in the national capital as people preferred to stay at their homes to offer namaz and most markets wore a deserted look due to the coronavirus-triggered lockdown.
The old city areas, which are usually crowded during Ramzan as people go for shopping to buy new clothes for the festival, were missing the usual hustle and bustle.
With religious places shut due to the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been advised by Shahi Imams of Jama Masjid and Fatehpuri Masjid to stay indoors and offer Eid namaz at their homes.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal condoled the death of eminent pulmonologist Dr Jitendra Nath Pande due to the COVID-19 and said Delhi salutes him for his work.
The former head of the Department of Medicine at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in Delhi died at his residence on Saturday. He was 79.
"Heartfelt condolences to Dr Pande's family. He retired from AIIMS after a long career of service but continued to work in another hospital until his unfortunate demise this week due to Corona. Delhi salutes you sir. RIP," Kejriwal tweeted.

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First Published: May 24 2020 | 10:56 PM IST

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