Karnataka asks Centre to enhance oxygen allotment

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Bengaluru, Apr 21 (PTI): Amid concern over shortage of oxygen during the spike in COVID-19 cases, Karnataka government has requested the Centre to fill the lacunae, State Health Minister K Sudhakar said on Wednesday.

He said the State may require 1,500 metric tonnes of oxygen every day.

'The Chief Minister has requested the Centre to provide 1,500 metric tonnes everyday. I have appealed to the Central Ministers also to provide additional oxygen and we are hopeful of a positive response,' Sudhakar said.

Noting that 300 tonnes of oxygen have been allotted per day, he said, 'Since cases are increasing, we may need 500 to 600 metric tonnes of oxygen by this month-end and 1,500 metric tonnes by the end of next month.' Meanwhile, the State reported another biggest single day spike of 23,558 new cases of COVID-19, and 116 related fatalities, taking the total number of infections to 12,22,202 and the death toll to 13,762.

The total number of active cases stood at 1,76,188.

Stating that there is anxiety among the people to get hospitalised soon after they are tested positive, the Health Minister said 95 per cent of positive cases do not require hospitalisation, and they can be isolated at their homes and treated.

'Our doctors are visiting the patients in home-quarantine, and rendering the consultation. Information regarding dos and donts will be circulated,' he was quoted as saying in a press release.

Patients with mild symptoms can be isolated at alternative arrangements at step-down hospitals developed at hotels or at COVID-19 care centres, he further said.

It would be difficult to provide treatment to the severely affected people if mild symptomatic patients are admitted to hospital.

Sharing details about beds reserved for COVID-19 patients, Sudhakar said private Medical colleges in Bengaluru have reserved 4,000 beds, government medical colleges have reserved 1,000 beds.

The government hospitals have reserved 1,409 beds and the private ones 7,442. PTI KSU NVG NVG