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Maharashtra: Hospitals running out of beds as the COVID-19 cases increases

COVID-19 patients at the district hospital in Maharashtra’s Osmanabad slumped in wheelchairs, hardly able to keep their eyes open, get their oxygen fix while more are wheeled in.

The Osmanabad district hospital seems to have run out of beds, the clips were recorded on cellphones by witnesses and so patients are made to sit on chairs as many of the nurses and doctors do their best to help as many people as possible.

The district, in the southeastern corner of the large state, reported 681 new cases and seven deaths in the last 24 hours – adding to Maharashtra’s new record of over 63,000 infections on Sunday.

Osmanabad was among the districts hailed with more than 4,300 active cases, on Sunday for issues with its medical oxygen supply along with Pune, Palghar, and Bhandara by teams of experts sent by the central government to audit some of the worst-hit states.

The state – which alone accounts for 48.57 per cent of the total active caseload of the country – was also found to have “sub-optimal” containment operations in several districts. The testing capacity in several districts in the state is overwhelmed, resulting in a delay in reporting test results.

Worst-hit among all states in the country, Maharashtra is under a weekend lockdown till 7 am Monday and has announced curbs like a night curfew through the week.

Fighting against the exploding infection numbers and shortages of vaccines, drugs and hospital beds, the state government is likely to take a call on declaring a complete lockdown this week.

Having let its guard down with mass religious festivals, political rallies and spectators at cricket matches, India is experiencing a ferocious new wave with around 10 lakh new cases in the past week. On Sunday, the country added 1,52,879 new infections.

“Maharashtra and nine other states of Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan have shown a steep rise in the daily new COVID-19 cases lately and account for 80.92 per cent of the new infections reported in the last 24 hours”, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday.

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