Most Delhi hospitals out of ICU beds for Covid patients, contrary to information given by Delhi govt

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, instead of addressing the lack of hospital beds in the capital, spoke about the imposition of weekend curfew in his press conference held on Thursday

Most Delhi hospitals out of ICU beds for Covid patients, contrary to information given by Delhi govt

Ashlin Mathew

There are no ICU beds available in most government hospitals and a few private hospitals in the national capital. Unlike what the Delhi government’s website claims, most government-run hospitals are turning away serious patients for lack of beds.

Appeals for ICU beds in Delhi have flooded WhatsApp groups and social media platforms.

There are no ICU beds available at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Safdarjung Hospital, Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Hospital (LNJP), Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Guru Teg Bahadur (GTB) Hospital, Deen Dayal Upadhyay (DDU) Hospital, Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital, Lady Hardinge Medical College, Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital, Mool Chand Khairati Ram Hospital and Max Super Speciality Hospital in Shalimar Bagh.

National Herald spoke to health workers at all these hospitals and called up the hospital phone lines to confirm the situation.

This is contrary to what the Delhi government’s website ( and mobile app have been stating. According to the website, AIIMS in south Delhi had three vacant beds, but in reality, that is not so. AIIMS has set aside 270 beds for Covid-19 patients, all of which are occupied.

The website shows that there are 100 vacant beds at GTB Hospital at Dilshad Garden in east Delhi, but a call to the hospital revealed that there are no vacant ICU beds in the hospital. Additionally, the phone number given on the Delhi government-run website was either constantly busy or switched off.

“All the ICU beds are full here. We became a designated Covid-19 hospital only three days ago. Yesterday, we had 130 Covid-19 admissions. Today, the numbers have increased. We do not have vacant ICU beds. Only serious patients are being admitted,” said a health worker at GTB Hospital.

Delhi reported 16,699 new cases and 112 deaths on Wednesday, taking the total number of positive cases to 7,84,137 and total deaths in the capital to 11,652. Delhi’s Covid-19 positivity rate – the percentage of all coronavirus tests performed that are positive – has spiked to 20.22% from 13.14 % on April 13.

India’s Covid-19 tally has risen to 14,074,564 cases and the country has the second highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world. The death toll from Covid-19 stands at 1,73,152.

At Delhi government-run LNJP Hospital, there are no ICU beds with ventilators available in the hospital although beds are available in the common ward. The hospital is currently not admitting patient in a serious condition. Early on Thursday morning, a Covid-19 patient was referred to RML Hospital, but the patient died.

“The Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is monitoring the situation personally,” said a source in the Delhi government, when it was pointed out that there was a mismatch in the data provided on the government-run app for Covid-19 admissions and the ground reality.

At RML Hospital in Central Delhi, there are no ICU beds with ventilators available, though the website showed there are three beds. “There are no vacant ICU beds in the hospital. There are usually two kept for emergency patients, but those cannot be included in the regular count. We are not admitting any serious patients as we cannot guarantee their health,” said a senior health worker at the hospital.

The situation is the same at Rajiv Gandhi Super Speciality Hospital in east Delhi’s Dilshad Garden. All non-Covid services had been suspended at RGSSH since April 8, 2021. It has been declared as a Covid-19 hospital. There are no vacant ICU beds with or without ventilators as of April 15, according to the hospital staff.

Sir Ganga Ram City Hospital in west Delhi’s Rajinder Nagar is also not admitting Covid-19 patients. All patients are being directed to Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, whose phone line was continuously busy for three hours.

There are no ICU beds at Safdarjung Hospital, DDU Hospital, LHMC and Moolchand Hospital either. All calls to these hospitals drew a blank.

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, instead of addressing the lack of hospital beds in the Union territory, spoke about weekend curfew and closure of gyms, malls, spas and auditoriums in his press conference held on Thursday. He highlighted that the curfew would begin at 10 pm on Friday (April 16) and continue till 5 am on April 19 (Monday).

Meanwhile, the situation continues to be grim across the country, and is particularly bad in Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. In Gujarat, for instance, more than 30 ambulances were lined up in front of Ahmedabad Civil Hospital, the city’s largest government Covid facility, waiting to enter for several hours. The 1,200-bed civil hospital has been out of oxygen and ventilator beds for several days now.

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