West Bengal: Amid shortage of beds, hospitals in Kolkata struggle to accommodate COVID-19 positive patients

11:31 PM Apr 19, 2021 | Aritra Singha

Kolkata: At a time when Delhi and Uttar Pradesh have decided to go for lockdown several government hospitals in West Bengal are finding it difficult to tackle the rising Covid situation.

Talking to Free Press Journal, Assistant Superintendent Chandrima M. Chakraborty of Calcutta Medical College and Hospital said that due to scarcity of beds, several patients are being returned and also there is scarcity of vaccines.


“We are trying hard to meet the demand for beds, but as of now we are running short of beds. We are hopeful that soon the demand will be met,” claimed Chakraborty.


Ismal Khan, who lost his father at the wee hours today claimed that even before getting admission in the hospital his father expired due to oxygen saturation.

“I have been roaming across the state government hospitals in Kolkata but due to scarcity of beds we couldn’t get my father admitted and in front of Calcutta Medical College he had died,” wept Ismal in front of his father’s body at Medical College and Hospital.

Mita Dey, Superintendent of Aurobindo Seva Sadan claimed that since her hospital is small, despite several attempts the number of beds couldn’t be increased.

“Due to the infrastructural problems we have kept patients even in general wards and even the ventilators are full. We are really facing a hard time to curb the menace,” stated Mita.

On the other side, private hospital AMRI currently has 91 critical care beds (ICU HDU) across its three units in Kolkata.

“We are working on adding at least 20 more critical care beds by next week. The supply of oxygen is currently steady but given the situation and the high demand of oxygen for COVID patients on critical care beds, there could be a crisis in the making, if provisions are not made,” stated a source of AMRI Salt Lake.

“Currently we have 244 beds for COVID patients. We have around 400 beds for non-COVID patients, including critical care patients. At present we are running three COVID Vaccination Centres at Dhakuria, Mukundapur, and Salt Lake. We’ve been vaccinating around 900 people daily till last month. Since the scarcity of vials started from April, we had to stop vaccination at Salt Lake from 10th April, which could only be started from 19th April. Right now, we’ve again started vaccination at all three centres. Today we vaccinated 778 people across the three centres,” further mentioned the sources adding that all the centres are having 600 tests per day.

Dr Sayan Chakraborty, infectious diseases specialist, AMRI Dhakuria: “The current situation is very grave and concerning. People seem to have lost all fear of the disease but they should continue to remain alert and careful. We request all political parties to immediately stop rallies and campaigns in any manner that breaks social distancing. They should also encourage their supporters and others to keep wearing masks and follow all the safety measures that we have been following for the last one year.”

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister had also urged the Election Commission to club the remaining phases together. BJP Central Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the elections are a constitutional obligation and has to be completed.

On April 19, 8,426 COVID patients and 38 deaths were recorded.

(To receive our E-paper on whatsapp daily, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

(To view our epaper please Read Now. For all the latest News, Mumbai, Entertainment, Cricket, Business and Featured News updates, visit Free Press Journal. Also, follow us on Twitter and Instagram and do like our Facebook page for continuous updates on the go)