- The facility reportedly ran out of oxygen
- This happened for the second time in the space of a week
- Earlier today Batra Hospital’s Executive Director issued a video SOS
Eight people, including one doctor, died at Delhi’s Batra Hospital on Saturday afternoon after the facility ran out of medical oxygen – for the second time in the space of a week – at 12.45 pm.
Six of the eight were admitted to the hospital’s ICU (intensive care unit) and two were in the wards. The doctor who died has been identified as Dr RK Himathani, the head of the Gastroenterology unit.
Hospital officials had told the Delhi High Court – holding a 11th straight day of hearings into the oxygen crisis in the national capital – that re-supply tankers only reached the hospital at around 1.30 pm, meaning that around 230 critically ill patients were without oxygen for around 80 minutes.
“We ran out of oxygen at 12.45 pm. Supply came at 1.30. We were out of oxygen for 1 hour and 20 mins,” the hospital told the court.
“We hope no lives were lost,” the court responded, to which the hospital said: “We have… including one of our own… one doctor.”
Earlier today Batra Hospital’s Executive Director, Dr Sudhanshu Bankata, issued a video SOS
“We have just run out of oxygen… currently surviving on some cylinders. Over the next 10 minutes that will also run out. We are again in crisis mode. The Delhi government is trying to help but believe their tanker is still some distance away,” he said.
Delhi Water Minister Raghav Chadha responded: “Our SOS cryogenic tanker carrying Liquid Medical Oxygen is reaching Batra Hospital within five minutes. Their regular supplier of oxygen has defaulted yet again due to alleged ‘lack of oxygen supplies’ and is being pulled up.”
Our SOS cryogenic tanker carrying Liquid Medical Oxygen is reaching Batra Hospital within 5 minutes. Their regular supplier of oxygen has defaulted yet again due to alleged ‘lack of oxygen supplies’ and is being pulled up. https://t.co/3olhhKq9iU
— Raghav Chadha (@raghav_chadha) May 1, 2021
At 12.01 pm, the hospital informed the court it was running out oxygen, again.
“We are in SOS since 6 am today morning… we have 307 patients admitted, out of whom 230 are on oxygen support,” the hospital had said.
This is the second time in one week that Batra Hospital has run out of medical oxygen. On April 24 the hospital received a last-minute re-supply that arrived minutes after its supply ran out.
Batra Hospital is among several in the national capital battling a crippling oxygen shortage that has endangered the lives of thousands of Covid and non-Covid patients.
Last week 25 people at the city’s Jaipur Golden Hospital died due to shortage of medical oxygen.
India has been hit by a devastating wave of Covid infections – daily new cases crossed the four-lakh mark this morning for a record global high. The surge in cases has left hospitals overworked, doctors traumatised, and resources like beds, medicines and oxygen in perilously short supply.
Delhi’s quota of oxygen has been raised to 490 metric tonnes per day – against an estimated demand of around 700 MT – but supply is only around 400 MT. The Arvind Kejriwal government has alleged shortfall in supply and that some tankers are being diverted to other states.
The scale of the crisis has prompted the global community to step in, with oxygen concentrators, tankers and other equipment being flown in by the United States, the United Kingdom, Singapore, the European Union and other countries.
With input from PTI