The hospital will initially have 150 general beds with oxygen supply, 50 ICUs, 50 emergency beds with High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC) ready
The 1,000-bed dedicated Covid-19 hospital at the DNCC Market in Mohakhali, Dhaka has finally been opened, easing the pressure on the healthcare system at a time when the country is in critical need of hospital beds.
As many as 250 of the 1,000 beds will initially be available, and it is hoped that the hospital will be fully operational by the end of the month, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said while inaugurating the hospital on Sunday.
The 250 beds will include 150 general beds with oxygen supply, 50 ICU beds, and 50 emergency beds with High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC). Among the emergency beds, 30 will be reserved for male patients and 20 for female patients.
“Bangladesh is facing a second wave of Covid-19 and around 160,000 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in the last month-and-a-half. Deaths have increased by five times and hospitals are filling up with patients. There is an urgent need to expand healthcare facilities, so the government has prepared the DNCC Market as a modern, dedicated Covid-19 hospital in a month,” the health minister said.
All 1,000 beds at the hospital will have oxygen supply, while 500 will have Intensive Care Unit (ICU) facilities. The initial plan for the hospital was to have 112 ICU beds and 112 High Dependency Unit (HDU) beds installed.
On a visit to the hospital on April 6, Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) chief Dr ABM Khurshid Alam told Dhaka Tribune that the government had decided to upgrade all the HDUs into ICUs.
“One way of thinking about it is that an HDU supports one organ while an ICU supports more than one organ. So, we are upgrading them all into ICUs,” he said.
According to a source from the hospital, they have ensured HFNC for all patients and ventilators for some critical patients.
Director of the hospital, Brig Gen AKM Nasir Uddin, said the hospital was being launched with 250 beds, and a total 500 beds would be operational in a week.
“We are hopeful that the hospital will be fully operational by April 29. Non-invasive ventilation (NIV) services will be provided to all patients at the ICUs, and we have mechanisms for ventilation in severe cases as well,” he added.
A triage will be located on the ground floor, while pathology, x-ray, and CT scan facilities will be on the first floor.
12,000 beds soon to have central oxygen supply, nationwide
Health Minister Zahid Maleque said the government had been able to increase the number of hospital beds in the country to 8,000 from 2,500 in just a few months.
Of the beds, 5,000 are at government hospitals, 1,000 at the DNNC Covid-19 dedicated hospital, and 2,000 beds at private facilities. According to the minister, private hospitals are in the process of increasing the number of beds and all the beds will be made available soon.
“A total of 12,000 hospitals across the country will soon have central oxygen supply connections. Less than 100 hospitals remain,” he added.
The minister also urged young people not to nonchalantly wander outdoors, as their reckless behaviour was putting their elders at risk.