At least 12 people, including the HOD of the gastroenterology department, died in Delhi’s Batra hospital on Saturday due to shortage of oxygen. This is the second time the hospital facility ran out of oxygen supply in a span of a week.
We are trying to revive five other critical patients, said Dr S C L Gupta.
Of the eight patients who died, six were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) and two others were in high dependency wards, he said, adding that R K Himthani, head of the gastroenterology department, was among those who died due to lack of oxygen.
Himthani had been admitted to the hospital for the last 15-20 days, the medical director said.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal expressed grief over the incident.
"This news is very painful. Their lives could have been saved -- by giving them oxygen on time. Delhi should get its quota of oxygen. Can't see our people dying like this. Delhi needs 976 tonnes of oxygen, but it received only 312 tonnes yesterday. How will Delhi breathe in such a less amount of oxygen?" he said on Twitter in Hindi.
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Gupta said they had informed the authorities about lack of oxygen Saturday morning when they had 2,500 litres of the life-saving gas left.
Around 12.30 pm, the hospital authorities claimed they had run out of oxygen. The oxygen tanker arrived at 1.35 pm, they said.
In a related development, Fortis Hospital in Vasant Kunj has stopped taking admissions due to oxygen shortage. The hospital has four hours of oxygen left, sources said.
According to the Delhi Corona mobile application, the hospital has 106 coronavirus patients.
Meanwhile, Sehgal Neo hospital in Meera Bagh sent out an SOS message on Twitter about its dwindling oxygen.
"We request urgent assistance in getting #SOSoxygen. We are running out of our backup supply, and have been waiting for a supply since early morning. We have 90 patients on O2 & 13 in ICU," the hospital tweeted around 12.40 pm.
Hospitals across the national capital and its suburbs have been sending out desperate messages of help on social media and other platforms, flagging their dwindling stocks of oxygen.
Sir Ganga Ram Hospital had last week reported the death of 25 of its “sickest” patients as the administration struggled with depleting oxygen supplies.
Twenty people died at the Jaipur Golden Hospital last week amid shortage of oxygen.
The Delhi government has maintained that the city is not getting its allocated quantity of life-saving gas.
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Friday said the oxygen crisis still persists in the national capital and they grapple with an SOS situation every day.
The Delhi High Court on Thursday asked the Centre as to why Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra were given more oxygen than they asked for while Delhi's allocation was not increased as per the request of the AAP government.
(With PTI inputs.)