NEW DELHI: The city of New Delhi on Sunday (Jun 7) ordered many of its hospital beds to be reserved solely for residents of the Indian capital, as the number of COVID-19 infections continued to surge.
India on Sunday registered 9,971 new coronavirus cases, taking its tally to 246,628 cases, with 6,929 deaths. The country's case numbers now lag only behind the United States, Brazil, Russia, the United Kingdom and Spain.
New Delhi city alone has registered more than 10 per cent of total cases, making it the third worst-affected part of the country after the western state of Maharashtra, home to financial capital Mumbai, and southern Tamil Nadu state.
"Delhi is in big trouble … (coronavirus) cases are rising rapidly," state Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said in a video message on Twitter, where he announced that private and city government-run hospitals will be reserved for Delhi residents.
"If we open Delhi hospitals for patients from all over, where will Delhi residents go when they get infected with coronavirus?"
Typically about 60 to 70 per cent of patients admitted to hospitals in Delhi are people travelling from other states to get treatment at the city's hospitals, which are among the best in the country.
A Delhi government COVID-19 mobile app showed the city of more than 20 million people had 8,049 COVID-19 beds, but more than half were already occupied. Of the 60 hospitals, 11 had no beds available, the app showed on Sunday.
The Delhi city government has issued an order saying hospitals must admit every patient from the city with COVID-19 symptoms, following complaints from some people on social media that people were being refused treatment.
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