Mumbai: Mumbai on Tuesday reported 635 new Covid-19 cases and 26 deaths, taking the total case count to 9,758 and the death toll to 387. Of the new cases, 120 patients had tested positive for coronavirus at various private laboratories between May 1 and May 3.
A total of 406 new suspected cases were admitted in various hospitals in the city. 220 patients were discharged after recovery. Taking cognizance of these figures, the health department will turn selected open spaces into 200-bed isolation facilities specifically to tackle the menace of Covid-19.
Soon, the iconic Mahalaxmi Racecourse will have a 300-bed isolation facility in its parking lot. The Nehru Planetarium, Nehru Science Centre, Mahim Nature Park, MMRDA grounds in Bandra, and few other places in the city will also be made available for Covid-19 patients.
A civic health official confirmed that additional beds will be added to the isolation centres at Byculla's Richardson Cruddas factory and NSCI dome, Worli.
“A 300-bed isolation facility is being constructed at the Mahalaxmi racecourse. At the moment we are using the parking lot for the isolation facility,” Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi said. The facility will house Covid-19 patients who have been categorized as asymptomatic, Mr Pardeshi added.
Home department officials from the state government mentioned that the entire 225 acres of the verdant racecourse could be acquired to house Covid-19 patients if required.
Office-bearers of the Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC), which comprises the city's elite including several industrialists, had initially objected to the racecourse being used as an isolation facility.
Top bureaucrats were told by the club members that grounds don’t have enough toilet and sanitation facilities if the property was turned into an isolation centre.
However, the officials from the disaster management cell of the Maharashtra government have planned installation of mobile toilets and oxygen lines for patients who develop complications from the virus.
The Maharashtra government has fast-tracked construction of facilities at a number of venues across the city, owned by various entities amidst estimates that the number of people testing positive for the virus would touch 70,000 by the mid of May.