Bihar Direly Needs Ventilators – Are State & Centre Doing Enough?

CM Nitish Kumar requested for ventilators but the state has not managed to receive a single one from the Centre.

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Video Editor: Mohd Ibrahim

While Bihar saw a sudden spike in COVID-19 cases across the state, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s repeated requests to the Centre for ventilators went in vain.

The Bihar government had demanded 100 ventilators from the central government, yet the state has not managed to receive even a single one.

With a population of approximately 12 crore citizens, it begs the question, how many ventilators will suffice the state’s needs?

To put the current situation of Bihar into perspective – 28 out of 38 districts in the state do not have a single ventilator while 37 out of them have seen at least one positive case. The three ‘coronavirus-specialized’ hospitals in Bihar have a total of 50 ventilators and 116 ICU beds. Darbhanga Medical College Hospital (DMCH), which is one of the biggest hospitals in the state, has only 21 ventilators and 24 ICU beds.

If you go by the state’s figures, then the ratio of locals dependent on government hospitals to the number of government hospitals is 92,582:1. While WHO says that there should be one doctor per 1,000 people, in Bihar the ratio is 1:43,000.

The question this raises is that despite bonhomie between the BJP and JDU in Bihar where they have a 50-50 seat-sharing ratio, are the governments at the state and Centre doing enough to mitigate the crisis?

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