KOLKATA: Critical care equipment, such as ventilators, high-flow nasal oxygen (HFNO), ECMO, monitors and BiPaps acquired by private hospitals to cater to Covid patients during the pandemic are now again being used even as many have extended their critical care units, general wards and emergency beds to meet the surge in admissions, fuelled by a spurt in respiratory ailments, that started a fortnight ago.
Peerless Hospital now has 377 patients admitted, the highest ever patient-load at the hospital. "We had acquired eight new ventilators and eight BiPaps during Covid to cater to the additional load of critical patients. A number of those ventilators are often being used now. Many of those were lying unused for several months till the admission surge since late-January.
We have seen a spurt in patients with breathing distress and the additional ventilators have proved useful," said Peerless CEO Sudipta Mitra. The hospital, which now has 38 ventilators, has added eight critical care beds and plans to add 16 more in the next two weeks. Six emergency beds have been added, where critical patients are often being treated for 24 hours till a bed for admission is available. Mitra, however, pointed out not all ventilators were being used simultaneously.
Medica Superspecialty Hospital had spent Rs 25 crore to strengthen its critical care facilities during the pandemic with 44 new ventilators, 11 ECMOs, 45 HFNOs and three BiPaps. The hospital has 84 ventilators and 62 HFNOs, almost 90% of which are being used to cater to the high patient load. "We are running at near full capacity for three weeks with a significant number of patients with oxygen requirement. So, the additional life-support equipment bought during Covid is being utilized now," said Medica deputy medical director Amit Ray.
AMRI Hospitals, too, has added 15 step-down unit beds at its Mukundapur and Dhakuria units and redeployed equipment bought to treat Covid patients. The hospital chain had spent Rs 4 crore to buy critical care equipment and another Rs 1 crore to pay rentals for hired gadgets. A total of 25 additional ventilators, one ECMO and eight BiPaps were acquired during Covid. "After the third wave of the pandemic, fewer than half of these were being used. But over the last fortnight, we have been running at capacity across our three units and the use of critical care devices has been 80% on an average.
Often, all our ventilators, BiPaps and ECMO are being used together to treat the high number of respiratory patients admitted currently," said AMRI CEO Rupak Barua. The hospital had bought the ECMO machine for Rs 40 lakh and also taken three machines at a monthly rent of Rs 10,000 each. The latter have been returned. AMRI has 400 critical care beds across its three units, and has added 10 critical care beds at its Dhakuria unit. It has also added 10 beds to its paediatric unit at Mukundapur.
Fortis Hospital had bought monitors during Covid all of which are being used now.
At Woodlands Hospital, too, equipment like ventilators, HFNC and syringe pumps bought during the pandemic are being fully utilised now. "As all our beds, including the ones meant for critical care patients, are running full, these equipment are now being used optimally," said Rupali Basu, managing director & CEO of Woodlands.
RN Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences had procured several ventilators, invasive monitors, and other life-saving equipment during Covid. "The occupancies have peaked in the hospital now in critical and non-critical care areas. All equipment is being optimally used to cater to increased patient flow and also as routine replacement for similar equipment that have got old," said Narayana Hospitals zonal head R Venkatesh.

Source link