Indian Railway deploys Covid care coaches in four states amid spike in cases

at 8:04 pm
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New Delhi (NVI): In order to address the problem of bed shortage in hospitals amid the rising COVID-19 cases, Indian Railways have started to deploy isolation coaches at various places for the treatment of patients.

The isolation coaches, which were deployed last year in only some states as COVID care centres, are now being put to use again.

“As the country is battling the scourge of the current second wave of Covid, the Ministry of Railways is deploying a no-holds barred approach by re-mobilising its initiative of Covid Care Isolation Coaches, already devised during the initial wave of Covid 19 with add-on conveniences,” the ministry said.

As a measure of preparedness, Covid Care coaches have been readied to serve as additional health care facility for isolation of Covid patients with mild symptoms. These coaches have now been additionally fitted with conveniences viz. coolers, jute-mats to cater to the current hot weather conditions.

In this regard, the state governments have been advised on the Modalities & Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) in place and the availability of Covid care coaches. Nearly 4,000 Covid Care Coaches with 64,000 beds, have positioned at various railway stations in the country, some of which have already served the isolation needs of patients in the first wave of Covid.

In Delhi, 50 coaches (with 800 beds) are deployed at Shakurbasti station (4 patients are currently admitted & 25 coaches (with 400 beds) are made available at Anand Vihar Terminal. At Nandurbar (Maharashtra), 21 coaches (with 378 beds) are positioned and currently 55 patients are admitted at this facility. At Bhopal station, 20 coaches have been positioned. 50 Coaches have been readied for deployment in Punjab and 20 coaches positioned for deployment in Jabalpur.

On demand of State Governments, these isolation centres will cater to needs of patients with mild and moderate symptoms (as directed to these facilities by State Health Authorities). The Railways takes all efforts to provide catering arrangements to these patients and maintain hygiene in these coaches. The State Governments’ utilisation of the Isolation Coaches will be made available through updates from time to time.