A top official at the Jaipur Golden Hospital in Delhi said today that 25 people died last night due to a lack of medical oxygen, highlighting the deteriorating situation in the national capital's hospitals.
Dr DK Baluja, Medical Director at Jaipur Golden Hospital said the government had allocated 3.5 metric tonnes of oxygen for them, which was supposed to reach by 5 in the evening.
"But it arrived about midnight. By that time, 25 patients had passed away," said Dr Baluja, reports NDTV.
He added that at least 215 Covid patients admitted to the hospital are critically ill and in desperate need of oxygen.
The hospital has now sought assistance from the Delhi High Court. "There is big human tragedy coming in next few minutes in our hospital. We have already lost 25 lives. We are gasping for oxygen. We have our Doctors before you. Please save lives. Please," Jaipur Golden Hospital said in its plea.
Jaipur Golden Hospital is the second hospital in the city to sent SOS over shortage of oxygen this morning.
Earlier Moolchand hospital, in a tweet, appealed for urgent help from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Lt Governor Anil Baijal. More than 130 Covid patients are on life support, it stressed.
"Urgent sos help. We have less than 2 hours of oxygen supply @Moolchand_Hos. We are desperate have tried all the nodal officer numbers but unable to connect. Have over 135 COVID pts with many on life support #. @ArvindKejriwal @CMODelh i@LtGovDelhi @satinderjain26 @PMOIndia (sic)," read the tweet put out by Moolchand Healthcare this morning. The hospital has stopped admitting new patients till it resolves the issue, sources said.
Madhu Handa, Medical Director, Moolchand Hospital, broke down as she gave details of the situation about an hour later while speaking to NDTV. "We are down to around 30 minutes (of oxygen supply) at the moment but yes, cognizance has been taken and nodal officers have responded. But I think there are other hospitals facing similar challenge. So they now have to prioritise."
Several hospitals have, over the past three days, flagged a crisis of oxygen supply, beds and medicines amid rising Covid cases, and many have approached the Delhi High Court for help.
The court has asked the Centre to strictly follow its order to provide medical oxygen to Delhi and ensure safe passage to oxygen without obstructions. "Beg, borrow or steal," said the judges, warning the centre that "all hell would break loose" if hospitals ran out of oxygen.
Last evening, Delhi logged 348 deaths linked to Covid, highest in a day so far. The city - battling with fourth Covid wave - also reported 24,331 new coronavirus cases.