GUWAHATI, July 2 - Two more patients died of COVID-19 today, taking the toll linked to the virus in the State to 14.
They have been identified as Prabhudayal Vidawatka (78) and Subhash Kalita (56). Both had comorbidities. One was a cancer patient, while the other had heart ailments and was under treatment at GMCH.
The number of positive cases rose to 9,434 on Thursday. During the day, 275 cured patients were released from different hospitals of the State.
Meanwhile, faced with the rise in the number of positive cases, the State health department went on an overdrive to create more hospital beds.
Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today had a meeting with representatives of all private hospitals in the city.
�In view of the rising number of cases, and likely further escalation, we held a meeting with all private hospitals in Guwahati and instructed them to set up specialised facility and dedicated teams for COVID-19 management,� Sarma said. �We are in tough times and all must contribute their bit,� he added.
The hospitals have been asked to allot a section of the beds for COVID patients. It is not clear if the hospitals will get any reimbursement from the government for treating the patients.
�We will have to set up separate COVID wards and prepare special teams, which will be rotated as one set will have to be quarantined after seven days of work,� an administrator of a private hospital said.
Stepping up the infrastructure for treatment, the health department has also set up a 450-bed COVID care hospital at Maniram Dewan Trade Centre in Guwahati which is expected to be functional soon.
The health minister last evening inaugurated a 900-bed COVID-19 care hospital at Khanapara field. It has individual rooms with attached bathrooms for patients.
The State government is also in discussion with the railway hospitals and the 151 Base Hospital of Indian Army.
Currently, there are 1,500 beds in the city and the health department says it would require another 1,500 in days to come, given the spike in cases in the city.