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Covid cases rise 55% in 24 hours, but hospitalisation still a low 3-7%

Even as Covid cases jumped a whopping 55 per cent in the 24 hours ended Wednesday morning to 58,097 and the first Omicron-related death was reported hospitalisation remained in the 3-7 per cent range in metros. The low hospitalisation rate is in sharp contrast with the Delta wave in 2020 when, according to VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, the pan-India hospitalisation rate was 20 per cent. In the current wave, even among those hospitalised, the number needing oxygen is negligible.

Mild or asymptomatic
In Delhi, the total Covid-19 cases as of Wednesday was 10,665, with a positivity rate of 11.88 per cent. Of those tested positive, about 7 per cent, that is, 708 were hospitalised.

Among this set, 551 remained “mild and asymptomatic”. About 2.8 per cent, 22 patients, were in ICU with ventilator support. “Very few need oxygen support. Delhi will not see the kind of catastrophe we witnessed last time even though the cases are rising,” said a top Delhi doctor.

In Mumbai, hospitalisation was 5 per cent. Similar trends are reported from smaller cities. In Rajasthan, from where the first Omicron-related death was reported, health officers reported low hospitalisation. In Jaipur, of the 700 Covid-19 patients, only 23 are in a hospital. “Only six patients are in the ICU,” said a State official.

Low hospitalisation in WB
The West Bengal Health Department portal reflected the Covid bed occupancy in at 3.25 per cent. The State, which saw total new Covid-19 cases spiral to 9,073 on Tuesday (January 4), has not witnessed any massive surge in hospitalisation so far. Officials at both government and private hospitals confirmed that even for those hospitalised there has not been much of a requirement for critical care beds so far.

Beds vacant in Tamil Nadu
On Wednesday, new Covid-19 cases in Tamil Nadu spiked to 4,862 against 2,731 on Tuesday. Chennai led the spike, reporting 2,481 new cases against 1,489 on Tuesday. At Chennai’s Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital (RGGGH), of the 528 normal beds, 317 are vacant. Of the 385 ICU beds, 379 are vacant. There are 1,137 oxygen supported beds of which 1,118 are vacant. Of the total 2,050 beds, 1,814 are vacant.

At the Omandurar Medical Hospital, of the total 500 beds, 264 are vacant. Of the 280 oxygen-supported beds, 114 are vacant and of the 170 ICU beds, 150 are vacant. However, all the 50 normal beds are occupied.

R Srinivasa, Resident Medical Officer at Victoria Hospital, Bengaluru, said, “There has only been a little increase in admission of Covid-19 patients in the last few days.” The ICU occupancy is also extremely low with just one-two patients.

Arunkumar C, Medical Superintendent at Karnataka Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS), Hubballi, said, “The hospital has only five Covid-19 patients, three of them were admitted in the last three days.” Only patients with serious symptoms or the aged have been admitted. The ICU occupancy, too, is low, he added.

Surge in Maharashtra
Manish Kolge, handling Covid-19 cases at Rao Nursing Home, Pune, said that last Monday he was treating four active Covid-19 patients and within a week, the number has gone up to 25. The number of critical patients is low and the symptoms in active patients are usually mild to moderate. Upper respiratory tract symptoms are found in some,” Kolge said. In the Pune Metropolitan Region there were 5,617 active Covid-19 patients till Monday of which 607 were hospitalised and 4,920 in home quarantine.

Same dosage
Meanwhile, on the ‘precautionary shot’ , the Health Ministry clarified on Wednesday that same dosage will be adminsitered for healthcare/frontline workers and the elderly with comorbidities. The Hindu BusinessLine

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