On Sunday, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike announced that it would be utilising the Bengaluru International Exhibition Centre (BIEC) as a COVID Care Centre for Bengaluru patients. The centre located on the outskirts of the state capital will have a capacity of 10,100 beds.
BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar visited the BIEC yesterday to see if the centre is adequately equipped to be used as a COVID Care Centre. Moreover, it will be the largest COVID facility in India.
BIEC to be utilised to meet surge in cases
Over the past few days, Bengaluru has witnessed an unprecedented surge in cases calling the government to act fast. With a high demand for hospital beds and complaints of lack of infrastructure as well as inefficient handling of the current situation, the government is trying to keep the public healthcare system afloat.
In a new move, the government will be converting the Bengaluru International Exhibition Centre on the outskirts of the city on Tumakuru road to meet the rise in cases. With 10,100 beds it will become the largest COVID facility in the country, a position held by New Delhi's Sardar Patel COVID Care Centre with 10,000 beds.
In BIEC's 5 halls 10,100 beds will be set up with a one-metre distance between each bed. Initially, the BBMP had planned to spread 5,000 to 7,000 beds at a distance of two metres each, however, government directives say one metre will suffice, the Joint Commissioner said.
BH Anil Kumar assured that the Centre is well-ventilated with an adequate number of toilets, nursing stations and kitchens. BBMP says that by Monday 7,000 beds will be ready to occupy while the remaining 3,000 will be added in a week. Moreover, the centre will house a 100-bed ICU facility with all the adequate infrastructure and oxygen supply, the Deputy CM CN Ashwath Narayan said after visiting the facility.
LED screens have also been put up to help patients stay engaged like the kids and the elderly. The BIEC will mostly be utilised for asymptomatic to patients with mild symptoms of COVID-19. Earlier the BIEC was used to house migrant workers who were leaving the city back to their homes when the lockdown was imposed.