NGOs set up Covid Care Centres to help patients

Covid-19 Health Pandemic

The Chandigarh Administration, with help from NGOs, is creating makeshift Covid Care Centres to take care of the growing Covid-19 population in the city.

Chandigarh: United Sikhs, a United Nations (U.N.) affiliated Non-Government Organisation (NGO), is the latest to join the list of NGOs working in Chandigarh to create mini Covid care centres. The NGO is making a 50-bed Covid-care centre in Sector 43, Sports Complex in Chandigarh.

The team working at the centre aims to increase the number of beds from 50 to 250, “depending upon the future requirements,” according to a press release. “We will also be providing clean drinking water and simple food. Apart from the food supplies, our team will be providing  Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Kits, Gloves, Mask and sanitiser and first-aid kits,” said the United Sikhs spokesperson in the report.

The Chandigarh Housing Board has taken help from many such NGOs to control the rising Covid-19 cases in the city. “All we do is provide permission to such NGOs,” said Mr Yashpal Garg IAS, Chief Executive Officer, Chandigarh Housing Board. “We allow them access to these areas, and they take care of everything else themselves.”

“Apart from 80 percent oxygenated beds, we are also bringing in 50 to 60 oxygen concentrators that we purchased through donations abroad and sent to India,” Amardeep Singh, Chandigarh representative of United Sikhs, said in another press release.

Since the beginning of May, many NGOs have come forward to create such Covid-19 Care Centres. The Competent Foundation and Bharat Vikas Parishad started a Covid Care Centre in Indira Holiday Home in Sector 24, Chandigarh. Another mini Covid-19 Care Centre was opened at Working Women Hostel, Bal Bhavan, Sector 23-B, Chandigarh.

Sector 8’s Mini Sports Complex in Chandigarh was also converted into a Covid Care Centre.

All these centres, on average, have 50 beds available for Covid-19 positive patients.

But not all these available beds are oxygenated. It depends upon the availability of oxygen cylinders. The NGOs say that they will attempt to “source oxygen cylinders or oxygen concentrators”.

“There are people who need isolation as they don’t have such provision at their homes,” said Mr Chandrakant Laharia, a Public Health Expert. “Not everyone needs the oxygen support. Some people are at the borderline. It is difficult to continuously monitor such people at home, so these makeshift centres help in monitoring such patients. If these patients are in the facility, oxygen can be arranged much faster than at home. So, even if these facilities don’t have 100 percent oxygen beds, they can make the cylinders available sooner than an individual can.”

The total number of Covid-19 cases in Chandigarh stand at 50,207. The city has seen 568 deaths so far.