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Indian Railways On COVID-19 Duty: Train Coaches To Be Converted Into COVID-19 Care Centre At 215 Stations

Special COVID-19 train coaches will be parked at 215 railway stations across 23 states. While at 85 stations, the Ministry of Railways will provide healthcare staff, states will fulfill the staff and medicine requirement at 130 stations

Indian Railways On COVID-19 Duty: Train Coaches To Be Converted Into COVID-19 Care Centre At 215 Stations
Highlights
  • Train coaches will be converted into COVID-19 care center
  • COVID-19 train coaches will be parked at 215 railway stations in 23 states
  • Biomedical waste segregation and management must in COVID-19 care centre

New Delhi: With the number of Novel Coronavirus cases in India crossing the 50,000 mark, the center has decided to convert train coaches into COVID-19 care centre for suspected and confirmed (very mild and mild) cases of Coronavirus. The latest initiative is a part of the government’s preparation for a sudden increase in the number of the COVID-19 positives in the country. Confirming the same, on Thursday (May 7), the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare uploaded a ‘guidance document on appropriate management of suspect/confirmed cases of COVID-19: Railway coaches – COVID-19 care centre’. The document lists out the guiding principles and standard operating procedures for the use of coaches and administering patients.

Also Read: Made From Cloth Meant For Employees’ Uniforms, Northern Railways To Deliver Its First Order Of 2,000 Masks

Sharing the pictures of the preparations on SOCIAL MEDIA, Piyush Goyal, Minister for Railways and Commerce and Industry wrote, “Geared up to tackle COVID-19: In line with PM Narendra Modi ji’s determination to provide healthcare in every corner of the nation. Special Isolation Coaches prepared by Railways will be placed at 215 railway stations across 23 states & UTs for use as COVID-19 Care Centres.”

Also Read: Northeast Frontier Railway Adopts Six-Pronged Strategy To Combat COVID-19 Crisis

Makeshift COVID-19 care centre or special COVID-19 train coaches will be parked at 215 railway stations across 23 states. In 85 stations, the Ministry of Railways will provide healthcare staff; in 130 stations, states need to provide staff and essential medicines.

According to the ministry guidelines, the respective state/UT government may place a request for parking the coaches at the other 130 stations only if they agree to provide staff and essential medicines at such railway stations.

The Health Ministry has also asked to provide separate coaches for suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19 so as to avoid cross infection. Also, it is suggested to assign an individual cabin to each patient. If the situation warrants, a maximum of two individuals can be put in a cabin, the ministry said.

Also Read: From Sanitising Trains, Stations To Thermal Screening Passengers: How Railways Is Gearing Up To Fight COVID-19

The state government shall map at least one COVID dedicated hospital for each train so that patients can be shifted to the hospital in case of an emergency. The state/UT government shall make suitable ambulance arrangements for shifting the patient; preferably one basic life support ambulance with oxygen and ambu bag should be stationed at the railway station where the train is placed, reads the standard operating procedure.

NDTV spoke to Dr P. N. Maheshwari, Nodal officer for the Guwahati railway station to understand the kind of preparation going on and how are trains being converted into COVID-19 care centre. Guwahati railway station is one of the 85 stations where the central government will provide healthcare staff. Sharing the details, Dr Maheshwari said,

Coaches with a capacity of 180 beds are ready and oxygen cylinders are also there but apart from this, we don’t have anything else. We require huge manpower including doctor, nurses, sanitation staff; linen; laundry. We did put out an advertisement calling for recruitment of people for different jobs but as of now, we haven’t received any response.

Also Read: COVID-19 Outbreak: Indian Railways Dedicates A Ward For Coronavirus Suspects

According to Dr Maheshwari these coaches will be put into use only when the existing healthcare infrastructure OF COVID-19 hospitals have been exhausted. As of now, there is no decision on when the state government will take over these makeshift COVID-19 care centres.

Explaining the challenges associated in using train coaches, Dr Maheshwari said,

There are some inherent problems in these coaches. For instance, in Mumbai, the temperature is soaring high and these coaches are not air conditioned. There is only a fan; because of heat neither patients will be able to stay here nor will healthcare staff be able to work well. This is the reason the state government is trying to build hospitals and takeover municipal corporation halls.

For temperature management, the ministry in its SOP has stated, “should the need arise for coach temperature management, arrangement for roof top insulation of the coach or any other suitable arrangement shall be made through local arrangements by Railways.”

Also Read: Study Reveals Most Critically Ill Patients With COVID-19 Survive With Standard Treatment

The staff working in these coaches will have to ensure biomedical waste segregation at source and the respective state/district will have to do waste disposal arrangements following the mechanism being followed for hospitals in the respective state/district.

Apart from this, when the train is handed back to Railways, the staff deployed for the train shall ensure all biomedical waste bins are cleaned and emptied; the train cleaned and disinfected, and then handed over to authorised staff after tallying the inventory. The Railway staff shall again disinfect the train as per protocol issued by Ministry of Health and Family Welfare from time to time and lock it till further orders.

Also Read: COVID-19: India Begins Clinical Trials Of AYUSH Medicines On Health Workers, Those In High Risk Areas

World

22,90,75,864Cases
19,16,26,474Active
3,27,49,574Recovered
46,99,816Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 195 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 22,90,75,864 and 46,99,816 have died; 19,16,26,474 are active cases and 3,27,49,574 have recovered as on September 21, 2021 at 3:56 am.

India

3,35,04,534 26,115Cases
3,09,5758,606Active
3,27,49,574 34,469Recovered
4,45,385 252Deaths
In India, there are 3,35,04,534 confirmed cases including 4,45,385 deaths. The number of active cases is 3,09,575 and 3,27,49,574 have recovered as on September 21, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

65,24,498 2,583

45,229 1,281

63,40,723 3,836

1,38,546 28

Kerala

45,24,158 15,692

1,67,578 6,623

43,32,897 22,223

23,683 92

Karnataka

29,68,543 677

14,386 1,025

29,16,530 1,678

37,627 24

Tamil Nadu

26,47,041 1,661

16,984 15

25,94,697 1,623

35,360 23

Andhra Pradesh

20,39,529 839

14,388 311

20,11,063 1,142

14,078 8

Uttar Pradesh

17,09,680 11

194 4

16,86,599 15

22,887

West Bengal

15,62,173 524

7,810 96

15,35,699 608

18,664 12

Delhi

14,38,517 20

379 8

14,13,053 28

25,085

Odisha

10,20,754 510

4,947 96

10,07,666 600

8,141 6

Chhattisgarh

10,05,094 38

297 7

9,91,234 43

13,563 2

Rajasthan

9,54,263 9

91 10

9,45,218 19

8,954

Gujarat

8,25,737 14

133 3

8,15,522 17

10,082

Madhya Pradesh

7,92,402 8

96 0

7,81,789 8

10,517

Haryana

7,70,746 13

340 6

7,60,598 7

9,808

Bihar

7,25,901 7

69 1

7,16,173 8

9,659

Telangana

6,63,662 208

4,991 14

6,54,765 220

3,906 2

Punjab

6,01,323 59

307 10

5,84,517 38

16,499 31

Assam

5,98,423 455

4,984 72

5,87,632 517

5,807 10

Jharkhand

3,48,125 9

55 1

3,42,937 10

5,133

Uttarakhand

3,43,393 11

267 6

3,35,736 17

7,390

Jammu And Kashmir

3,28,069 128

1,461 32

3,22,191 159

4,417 1

Himachal Pradesh

2,17,140 234

1,616 54

2,11,871 177

3,653 3

Goa

1,75,583 85

810 36

1,71,478 48

3,295 1

Puducherry

1,25,517 54

867 56

1,22,818 109

1,832 1

Manipur

1,18,673 178

2,183 6

1,14,658 183

1,832 1

Tripura

83,905 51

346 10

82,750 40

809 1

Mizoram

81,460 1,731

15,140 1,008

66,057 721

263 2

Meghalaya

79,667 174

1,896 5

76,391 168

1,380 1

Chandigarh

65,188 7

41 4

64,329 3

818

Arunachal Pradesh

54,126 56

410 12

53,444 67

272 1

Sikkim

30,971 16

654 59

29,937 74

380 1

Nagaland

30,907 43

467 17

29,786 59

654 1

Ladakh

20,737 7

138 4

20,392 3

207

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,670

0 1

10,666 1

4

Lakshadweep

10,359 3

8 3

10,300

51

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,600

13 0

7,458

129

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