Mumbai: Coming soon, helpline for ventilators in BMC hospitals

Updated: Dec 14, 2016, 10:05 IST | Laxman Singh |

BMC to start helpline for patients and their kin to inform them about availability of ventilators and ICU beds in civic hospitals

The BMC is going to start a helpline that will inform patients and relatives about the availability of ventilators and ICU beds in civic hospitals. The issue was discussed in a meeting of the Public Health Committee last week.

Chasing the issue
Shiv Sena corporator and health committee member Dr Anuradha Pednekar, who has been pushing for this, said, “Several times patients have died because of the huge gap in demand and supply of ventilators. In cases of emergency, people rush to the nearest hospitals, but there, they are told about the unavailability of ventilators. This wastes time.”

“Also, at many civic hospitals, ventilators don’t work. The helpline should have data compiled on how many ventilators are available, how many of them are working and in which hospitals. This will help save hundreds of lives,” she added.

‘Ventilators available’
A senior civic official from the health department, in an official statement before the health committee, said, “Except a few smaller hospitals, ventilators are available in all major and periphery hospitals run by the BMC. We give preference to critical patients or as per requirement.”

“There are more than 450 ventilators in all for adults and the neo-natal section in BMC hospitals; 95% are functional. We plan to buy 188 more in the next couple of months,” said another
official.

Director of BMC hospitals Dr Avinash Supe said, “We are working on starting such a helpline. An NGO will monitor the status in all hospitals and, accordingly, give information on the availability of ventilators and ICU beds.”

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