Covid-19: Over 95% of hospital beds in India go unoccupied despite high case count

'The focus is firmly on home care, unlike the last time'


A Staff Reporter

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Published: Thu 27 Jan 2022, 7:50 AM

According to government figures, more than 95 per cent of hospital beds for Covid patients remain unoccupied in states that account for the maximum number of cases in India.

Rajasthan has 90,000 active cases and 84,000 beds are available for patients. Parsadi Lal Meena, the medical and health minister, said just two per cent of beds are occupied. In the second wave last year, most beds in government hospitals and private facilities were occupied with patients.

In Kerala, another state with a massive spike in infections, active cases have gone up to 260,000. But just 3.5 per cent have been admitted to hospitals and Covid treatment centres.

"The focus is firmly on home care, unlike the last time," a government official told the media.

"We do not want mild cases to flood our hospitals, occupying the beds which should be kept free for those who develop serious disease. Our tertiary care centres will treat only serious patients. Most of the patients who are rushing to the emergency wing demanding admissions are being examined and then counselled to remain home and seek tele-consultation if required."


Of the nearly 38,000 beds in Mumbai, a little more than 4,000 were occupied on Wednesday. Last April, when the second wave peaked, almost 22,000 of the 30,000 beds had been occupied by Covid-19 patients.

Delhi, which was also badly hit in the second wave, has seen less than 2,500 hospital beds occupied this time. Last April, about 16,500 beds had been taken over by Covid patients.

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