To deal with the Covid pandemic crisis, Indian Railways on Tuesday said that it has planned to set up 86 Oxygen plants for its hospitals across the country and it has increased the beds for the coronavirus infected patients from 2,539 to 6,972.
Railway Ministry spokesperson D.J. Narain said that the national transporter is leaving no stone unturned in the fight against Covid-19. On one hand, railways is moving Oxygen Express trains swiftly with loaded oxygen to different parts, on the other, it is continuing with the movement of passenger and freight traffic.
“At the same time, Railways has geared up its in-house medical facilities,” he said.
He said that massive capacity enhancement is planned in 86 railway hospitals across India.
“Four Oxygen plants are functional at railway hospitals, 52 have been sanctioned and 30 are under various stages of processing. All Railway Covid Hospitals to be equipped with Oxygen plants soon,” he said.
Narain said that the General Managers of the railway zones have been delegated further powers, up to Rs 2 crore in each case for sanctioning Oxygen generation plants.
He also said that a series of measures have been initiated by the railways.
“The number of beds for Covid treatment has been increased from 2,539 to 6,972. The ICU beds in Covid hospitals have been increased from 273 to 573,” he said, adding that invasive ventilators have been added and their number has been increased from 62 to 296.
Narain said that constant efforts are being made to add critical medical equipment like BiPAP machines, Oxygen concentrators, oxygen cylinders etc in railway hospitals.
The official said that railways has also issued instructions that Covid affected employees may be admitted to empaneled hospitals on referral basis as per need.
“This massive capacity enhancement in Railway Hospitals would usher in better infrastructure to handle medical emergencies,” Narain added.
Last week, Railway Board chairman and CEO Suneet Sharma while addressing a virtual press conference had said that at least 1,952 railway employees died due to Covid since last year and over 1,000 employees are still affected with Covid.
On Tuesday, India recorded 4,329 deaths due to Covid, highest in a day till date with 2.63 lakh fresh cases.