The number of Covid patients admitted in several hospitals in Kolkata has almost doubled over the past few days, officials of the hospitals said on Wednesday.
Till last week, a number of hospitals did not have to admit a single Covid patient. But post-Christmas, there has been a sharp rise in admissions, the officials said.
According to the hospitals, most of the Covid patients getting admitted are vaccinated. And they are mostly having mild symptoms such as fever.
One private hospital said most patients were getting admitted for the monoclonal antibody cocktail therapy.
The state health department has decided to again convert MR Bangur Superspeciality Hospital into a dedicated Covid treatment centre, fearing a surge in cases.
“Depending on the number of cases, we will be adding more Covid facilities,” Bengal health secretary Narayan Swaroop Nigam said.
Public health experts said celebrations during the ongoing festive season without adhering to Covid norms, such as wearing a mask, could have led to the sharp spike.
Bengal recorded 1,089 new Covid cases on Wednesday, compared with 439 on December 27.
The rise in count, however, hardly prompted any behavioural change in the city as many Kolkatans were seen without masks during the day.
The rise has been reflected in the number of hospital admissions.
Belle Vue Clinic had 18 Covid patients admitted till two days back.
On Wednesday, the number was 37. As many as 10 patients were admitted on Wednesday.
“The patients admitted on Wednesday are all fully vaccinated. None of them is critical. Most got admitted to get the monoclonal antibody cocktail,” said Pradip Tondon, CEO of Belle Vue.
Admission is mandatory for the monoclonal antibody cocktail therapy, which has to be administered in the initial days of the infection.
Peerless Hospital had less than 20 Covid patients till three or four days back. On Wednesday, the count shot up to 37.
“Seven patients were admitted on Wednesday. All of them are running a temperature but none is in need of oxygen support,” said Sudipta Mitra, chief executive of Peerless Hospital.
The hospital authorities decided at a meeting on Wednesday that another Covid ward would be set up if there was a surge.
The Covid test positivity rate at the hospital’s diagnostic centre, Mitra said, has increased from 3 per cent a week ago to 15 per cent.
At AMRI Hospitals, too, the positivity rate for Covid tests has gone up from 2.5 per cent last week to 22 per cent, said an official of the group.
The number of patients at the three units of the group has gone up from 40 four days ago to 52.