As India batters through a spate in the number of coronavirus cases, the health care system is starting to crumble. Some patients are struggling to get treatment as the hospitals are overflowing with patients.
Mumbai, the epicenter of the surge, has seen the dire consequences of lack of adequate health care system. The metropolis had just 14 intensive care beds available for patients with covid-19, as of Friday.
In Delhi, it is estimated that by the end of July coronavirus cases might skyrocket to more than 500,000. Joanna Slater and Niha Masih wrote in the Washington Post that fulfilling the need for an increase in cases Delhi will need 80,000 hospital beds – about 10 times the number available now.
The surge in coronavirus cases is the result of the wavering of the country’s stringent lockdown. It was able to break the chain but came at a humongous cost.
Many pointed out that a tumbled health care system is the consequence of government spending on health care that has remained abysmal. India spends just over 1 percent of its gross domestic product which is far lower than the global average. According to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, India had only 0.5 hospital beds per 1,000 people before the pandemic smacked.