Delhi to increase daily Covid tests to 1.25 lakh: Kejriwal

Besides, Shah and Kejriwal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal were also present at the meeting.
SARS antibody

New Delhi: After participating in a meeting convened by Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Delhi’s grim Covid situation, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said he had sought the Centre’s cooperation in jointly tackling the pandemic spread and in increasing the number of daily tests.

“It was also decided in the meeting that the number of tests in Delhi will increased from 60,000 per day to 1 lakh or 1.25 lakh.

“The Delhi government facilities are working at their highest capacity right now, therefore, the ICMR has assured that they will help us to increase the number of testing,” Kejriwal said.

Earlier, the Home Minister, who chaired the emergency meeting at his North Block office, tweeted saying that he “instructed” to double the RT-PCR tests in Delhi.

Kejriwal also told media persons after the meeting that the Centre has assured 750 ICU beds which will be made available at the DRDO centre.

He added that the Centre will also help the Delhi government in getting BiPap machines to increase the number of ICU beds at Delhi government facilities.

In the meeting, the CM also followed up on Delhi government’s request to increase the number of beds in the Central government hospitals.

Besides, Shah and Kejriwal, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Delhi Lt Governor Anil Baijal were also present at the meeting.

Kejriwal had earlier said: “Today Home Minister Amit Shah called an emergency meeting over the Covid pandemic situation in Delhi. After this meeting we have the assurance that all the government agencies of both the central government and the state government will work together to tackle the Covid-19 situation of Delhi. I want to thank Amit Shah ji for his cooperation.”

Earlier this week Kejriwal wrote to the Union Health Minister requesting him to augment Covid-19 bed capacity in central government-run hospitals in the capital in view of the surge in cases.

The Delhi government also reached out to all the private hospitals to increase the number of Covid beds and to reserve 80 per cent of beds for corona patients. Last week the Delhi High Court gave its nod to the city government’s decision of reserving 80 per cent of intensive care unit (ICU) beds in 33 private hospitals for Covid-19 patients for two weeks, lifting its legal hold after noting that the coronavirus outbreak was at alarming new levels in the national capital.

As on date, there are 16,641 Covid-19 beds out of which the Delhi government hospitals has 5451, Centre has 3,721 and the remaining are private hospitals.

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