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Hyderabad: Shortage of O2 cylinders chokes Osmania Hospital
- Officials rue they are unable to meet the demand of oxygen cylinders as cases swell
Hyderabad: With rapid increase in the spread of coronavirus in Hyderabad, hospitals are finding it challenging to provide patients with oxygen cylinders. At present, Osmania hospital is hard put to manage with 300 oxygen cylinders. If the number of patients exceeds, it may not be possible to take in new cases, feel the officials.
"We are serving patients with the limited sources we have. Earlier, we had around 200 beds with oxygen cylinders and the Telangana government added 100 more cylinders in this coronavirus pandemic. To handle the situation, we are first asking visitors to undergo required tests. After analysing the reports, we are sending home those who tested negative and others to Gandhi Hospital after two days," said Dr Pandu Nayak, anesthesia specialist, Osmania Hospital.
"The demand for oxygen cylinders is indefinite each day. Around five per cent of severe cases require ventilators and others can be managed with oxygen cylinders. Anticipating the rise in new cases, capacity building is being carried out. But still it's being difficult to beat the demands," says doctors.
"The rent per oxygen cylinder is Rs 1,600 which is a huge investment. We have an oxygen plant access at NIMS and it would be better if we could develop one at Osmania hospital," say experts. "Portable oxygen cylinders are largely in use, but we are observing at least 100 patients in need of oxygen cylinders each day to handle this situation. We are suggesting home quarantine to the patients who are having mild symptoms. Hospital is 100 per cent filled with coronavirus patients and daily we are observing around 300 patients reaching us in fear of attack by coronavirus," says J Vamshi Krishna, a junior doctor in Osmania.
On the other hand, patients feel that the government should have a backup plan. Availability of oxygen cylinders will save hundreds of lives and it helps several families financially, as many of them are visiting private hospitals and are forced to spend lakhs for the treatment that has no medicine.
"We are being sent from one hospital to another hospital in search of treatment and admission. Accessing a bed with an oxygen cylinder facility is all we need and none of the government hospitals could provide us one," said K Shalini, mother of a coronavirus patient and resident of Mettuguda.