New Delhi: Reiterating his apprehension that city hospitals may get swamped by people from other states in the absence of restrictions, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said that the Delhi government hospitals and the private hospitals will be restricted to the city dwellers till the rising COVID-19 cases are contained. However, the hospitals of the Central government will be open to all, and some private hospitals which perform specialized surgeries and treatments will be open to all. He also announced that following the orders of the Central government the malls, restaurants, and places of worship will be reopened from Monday (June 8). He also said that the Delhi border, which was sealed last week, will be open for inter-state movement from Monday. While malls and restaurants will resume activity from Monday as per the Centre’s guidelines, hotels and banquet halls will remain shut, he added.
*Malls, restaurants, and places of worship will be reopened from Monday but hotels & banquet halls will be remained shut: CM Kejriwal*
Addressing a digital press briefing Mr. Kejriwal said, “Following the orders of the Central government, the Delhi government has decided to open the restaurants, shopping mall, and the places of worship from tomorrow (Monday, June 8). The Central government has issued specific guidelines regarding the opening of these places which include maintaining social distancing, wearing masks, and others. All these guidelines prepared by the experts of the Central government would be followed in Delhi and we will release the detailed order soon. However, the government will take a call on opening banquet halls later as the number of cases of COVID is rising, there might be a need to take over the hotels and banquets to transform them into COVID care facilities.”
*Senior citizens and people with comorbidity are advised to stay home; all others should follow social distancing norms and wear masks: CM Kejriwal*
He also asked people to keep following social distancing and other norms even during relaxations. “Relaxations do not mean that coronavirus disease has ended,” said the Delhi Chief Minister. “Wearing a mask is for your own safety. I am still getting reports that people are going out without masks. You have to wear a mask, maintain social distancing and wash your hands to keep yourself safe from COVID-19 infection,” he added.
He also urged senior citizens to observe extra caution, and reduce interaction “even with family members” as much as possible. ” My appeal to the senior citizens of Delhi is, do not think that the lockdown is over because senior citizens are the most vulnerable section right now. If there are young people in your house who are going outside for work then avoid any interaction with them and maintain social distancing. If you want to go out then just go for a walk but do not interact with anyone. The senior citizens and people with comorbidity should be very careful because these two sections are more vulnerable to calamities caused by COVID,” said Mr. Kejriwal.
*Delhi borders will be opened from tomorrow: CM Arvind Kejriwal*
He also said that the Delhi government has taken the decision to open the borders which were sealed for a week. “Last week we decided that the borders of Delhi would be sealed for a week because if the borders are opened then COVID-19 patients from across the country might come to Delhi for treatment. We had an apprehension that such a situation might cause a lack of beds for the COVID-19 patients of Delhi. But we have decided to open the borders from tomorrow,” he said.
*Nearly 7.5 lakh people have sent their suggestions to us and more than 90% of people have said that till the COVID situation exists the Delhi hospitals should be reserved for the people of Delhi: CM Arvind Kejriwal*
“Last week I asked for suggestions from the people on whether or not beds in hospitals will be reserved for Delhi residents. Till March, all the hospitals of Delhi were open to all, the residents of Delhi never denied treatment to any person ever. At any given time nearly 60-70% of patients in Delhi hospitals are from other states and we never deny treatment to any person. But right now the cases of COVID-19 are increasing in Delhi and the Delhi government is working relentlessly to arrange more beds for the people of the city. If we get more cases in such a situation, where will we accommodate the patients of Delhi? This is why I asked for suggestions from the people. Nearly 7.5 lakh people have sent their suggestions to us and more than 90% of people have said that till the COVID situation exists the Delhi hospitals should be reserved for the people of Delhi,” said the CM.
*5-member expert committee has also suggested reserving the Delhi hospitals for the residents, we need to balance the situation: CM Arvind Kejriwal*
He said that the Delhi government had formed a 5-member expert committee with Dr. Mahesh Verma, vice-chancellor of Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Dr. Sunil Kumar, medical director of Guru Teg Bahadur hospital, Dr. Arun Gupta, president of the Delhi Medical Council, Dr. RK Gupta, former president of the Delhi Medical Association, and Dr. Sandeep Budhiraja, group medical director of Max hospital.
“The committee has studied the situation in light of the recently increasing number of COVID cases in Delhi and submitted their recommendations. They have said that by the end of June Delhi will need nearly 15,000 beds for COVID-19 patients. They have suggested reserving the Delhi hospitals for the people of Delhi because if we open the hospitals for all then the 9,000 COVID bed which have made will be filled just within three days,” said Mr. Kejriwal.
*Delhi hospitals to be reserved for residents of Delhi, Central Govt hospitals will remain open for all. Private hospitals performing special surgeries to also remain open for people from other states: CM Arvind Kejriwal*
He said that today the Cabinet of the Delhi government held a meeting and discussed all these issues. “There is a need to maintain a balance. In Delhi, the state government hospitals have around 10,000 beds and the Central government hospitals have another 10,000 beds. For now, we have decided that the 10,000 beds under the Delhi government will be kept for residents. The beds under the Central government can be used by all. Private hospitals covering special treatments and surgeries will be open for all. This will make a balance for both the residents of Delhi and the people from all over the country,” said CM Kejriwal.