Panchkula ramps up sampling, more oxygen storage units operational

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THE PANCHKULA district as well as health administration have started preparing for a rise in the number of Covid-19 cases. Important steps including increase in oxygen storage capacity, setting up of a pressure swing absorption (PSA) oxygen plant, an increase in sampling, have been taken already. Talks for provisions of Covid Care Centres (CCC) also remain underway as they await approval from the deputy commissioner.

As per CMO Dr Mukta Kumar, “As soon as we noticed an increase in numbers the past week, we began our preparations for another rise in Covid cases. I have taken two meetings to increase sampling and am coordinating with administration regarding provision of restrictions and opening of Covid Care Centres.”

While an average of 724 samples were collected every day in the month of October, the numbers began falling to 451 samples per day in November. Ramping up the sampling, which would fall down to as low as 100 on Sundays, the district is now processing more than 700 samples per day. The Haryana government, however, has told the Panchkula administration to aim towards sampling atleast 1,700 persons per day.

Meanwhile oxygen plants as well as oxygen storage units, the need for which was felt at the time of second wave, which started to get constructed this May, have become functional. Two high capacity oxygen storage plants of 6,000 litres and 10,000 litres have been put up at the Sector 6 Civil Hospital of the district. Alchemist Hospital, Ojas Hospital, Paras Hospital and Command Hospital too possess small oxygen storage plants. A shortage for storage was also experienced during second wave of Covid-19.

A 300 litre per minute (LPM) PSA oxygen plant too was constructed at the Panchkula Civil Hospital in September. The work for building of the oxygen tank though was initiated in January this year, for a total budget of Rs 1.7 crore, which was to begin functioning in February, was delayed by the private company contracted to do the job. The plant can cater to 30 routine beds per day. Another oxygen plant with a capacity of 500 LPM still remains under construction at the Kalka Government Hospital to cater to the patients of rural India.

CCCs which were shut down after the second wave are being set up and prepared in case of a rise in numbers. The Panchkula administration has held several meetings in the past week to discuss this rise and their preparation. In advisories issued, the administration has urged the residents to get fully vaccinated at the earliest.

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