Updated: Aug 10, 2020
When it comes to availability of hospital beds for Corona patients, India has been struggling to avail beds in spite the papers showing that there is ample availability of beds mainly because in reality there is a shortage of beds for patients in India, for more details on it you could read our previous article on “HOW COVID-19 WAS CONTROLLED BY JAPAN AND SOUTH KOREA?”. The state government has been issuing tenders and procuring beds in all other ways possible to ease this situation but truth been told, most of the beds that is procured by the government are Flat Beds (Zero function beds) which are no more useful than that of a household single bed if not worse than those.
In the list of various important equipment needed to treat a COVID19 patient, A multi-functional hospital bed is a must have, that is often neglected mainly because of lack of proper education at the procurement end of the government of what the patient needs and how their treatment goes.
We asked the front-line doctors and Nurses on what type of bed a COVID19 Patient need and they were quick to respond with “A fowler bed at the least”. This is essential because the main problem with COVID19 patients is with their respiration and therefore the patients need to always be in an angled position which will help them in breathing and prevent choking. They also proceeded saying that it will be best to have a proper 5 function ICU cot for the patients as the virus affects old age people the most and, in that case, patients become weak and won’t be able to climb up and down the bed unless the height is adjusted and at times they even need to lay in chair position for food consumption.
IMED5000 at Southern Railway Hospital, COVID19 Block, Ayanavaram
To help the patients with better care, a few government hospitals have been procuring hospital beds out of their own interest apart from the Flat beds that are provided to them by the central procurement of the government. One such is the Southern Railway Hospital who opted for IMED5000 for their newly opened COVID19 block, this bed is packed with all features that would help the patients during their difficult times and also give the care givers the ease to operate and perform various functions without having to actually wake the patient from bed. The doctors at Southern Railway hospital say that since the procurement is done by a doctor it is easy for them to know what the patient need.
This helps us understand that the one thing which is missing in the central procurement process is their communication with the end user and the frontline workers. Although the government is putting its best foot forward in procuring the beds, since there is a huge gap between what is actually needed and what is procured, all its efforts almost add up to no good.