LAHORE: A record 88 people died of the Covid-19 in Punjab during the last 24 hours, taking the death toll to 6,675 while there are alarming reports of 100 bed occupancy in critical care units (ICUs) of the teaching hospitals of many cities.

It was the highest number of deaths reported in a day in the province since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.

Of the new deaths, 42 people died in Lahore alone, another record number of deaths reported since March of the last year.

With the new deaths, the Lahore’s toll has jumped to 2,738, according to the official figures released by the Punjab government here on Tuesday.

The data showed the total number of confirmed cases of the infections reached 235,569 after 2,221 more people tested positive for the virus in the province during the last 24 hours.

ICUs of public hospitals running out of space

Of the new cases, 1,172 were reported in Lahore alone where the number of total positive cases reached 125,374.

The official reports coming from the public teaching hospitals of many cities paint a dismal picture regarding the pathetic response of the government to prevent deaths of critical patients during the third wave of the virus.

According to the data, 75pc of the total ventilators designated in all the public sector teaching hospitals of Lahore are occupied.Similarly, 71pc of the total beds allocated in the high dependency units (HDUs) at the teaching hospitals of the city have also been filled.

Of the government hospitals, the ventilators occupancy in the ICUs of the Government Kot Khawaja Saeed Hospital is 100pc, in Mayo Hospital 99pc, Jinnah Hospital Lahore 55pc, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital 60pc, Lahore General Hospital 77pc, Services Hospital 88pc, Government Nawaz Sharif Yakki Gate Hospital 90pc, the Punjab Institute of Neruo Sciences 33pc and in the ICU of Pakistan Kidney and Liver Institute, 88pc ventilators are occupied by the critical patients of the virus.

The data also shows a very precarious situation in the state-run teaching hospitals of some other major cities of Punjab where most of the ventilators are occupied by the critical patients.

According to the figures, 100pc ventilators at the Benazir Bhutto Hospital Rawalpindi are occupied, 91.3pc at the DHQ Hospital Gujranwala, 71pc at Nishtar Hospital Multan, 61pc at Sheikh Zayed Hospital Rahim Yar Khan and 71.4pc ventilators at DHQ Hospital Sargodha are occupied.

Similarly, the space in the HDUs of the teaching hospitals of many cities is also going to be filled,

In the HDUs of Benazir Bhutto Hospital Rawalpindi, Sheikh Zayed Hospital Rahim Yar Khan, DHQ Hospital Sargodha and Nisthar Hospital Multan the bed occupancy ratio has reached 100pc, in the Allied hospital Faisalabad it is 95.2pc, in DHQ Hospital Faisalabad 95pc, in DHQ Gujranwala 91pc and in the HDUs of Holy Family Hospital Rawalpindi, the bed occupancy ratio has reached 67pc.

Published in Dawn, April 7th, 2021

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