Maharashtra health ministry expands healthcare facilities
State health minister Rajesh Tope announced that the laboratory capacity to test samples of coronavirus will be expanded at the Kasturba, JJ, KEM hospital in Mumbai in the next two days
Maharashtra has reported 32 positive cases of novel coronavirus so far, state Health Minister Rajesh Tope said here on Sunday. He announced that the laboratory capacity to test samples of suspected novel coronavirus will be expanded to 350 per day from the present 100 per day at the civic-run Kasturba hospital in Mumbai in the next two days.
Tope said another laboratory will be set up at KEM hospital in Mumbai in the next two days. New laboratories will also come up at JJ Hospital, the Haffkine Institute--also in Mumbai, besides at BJ hospital in Pune in the next 15-20 days. He said a decision has already been taken on this regard. "Orders will be issued either on Monday or Tuesday and the facility will be ready within 15-20 days," he added.
"Maharashtra has 32 confirmed positive cases of novel coronavirus as of now including nine people who are admitted at Kasturba hospital," the minister told reporters after reviewing the quarantine facility and other infrastructure at Kasturba hospital.
Tope said that 250 samples can be tested at the new facility at KEM hospital. "250 samples with new machines and around 100 with old existing set up can be tested from Wednesday," he said, adding that another lab will be set up at KEM hospital by Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the state government has appealed to the Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) to postpone its upcoming exams till March 31, apparently in view of rising cases of viral transmissions. "The chief minister has appealed to the MPSC, which is an autonomous body, to conduct exams after March 30. I am confident the MPSC will conduct the exams after March 30," he said.
Tope said he reviewed wards in Kasturba Hospital where COVID-19 cases as well as the suspected patients are being treated. He also visited the OPD facility. Presently, nine Coronavirus positive patients are being treated at the hospital while 80 other suspected cases are kept in isolation.
"The hospital has capacity of 80 beds, which we are increasing to 100," he said. The minister further said facilities like television, WiFi are being provided to patients at the hospital, along with newspapers, food and fruits. Tope said the hospital has sufficient number of N95 masks, Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and other gears for its staff and doctors.
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