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healthcare | IST

COVID-19 is 10% of total admissions: Fortis Healthcare

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To understand if there's been a rise in hospitalizations due to COVID, and also to get a sense of the on-ground preparedness, CNBC-TV18 spoke to Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, MD and CEO, Fortis Healthcare. According to him, the hospitalization numbers have gone up by 2-3 times in the last 10 days. However, COVID patients are currently forming only 10 percent of the hospital's total admissions.

With India now battling a third wave of COVID-19, and Omicron cases gradually rising, hospitals are gearing up to tackle the surge in numbers. To understand if there's been a rise in hospitalizations, and also to get a sense of the on-ground preparedness, CNBC-TV18 spoke to Ashutosh Raghuvanshi, MD and CEO, Fortis Healthcare.
Raghuvanshi said that COVID-19 patients currently form 10 percent of their total admissions. To give a better sense of Fortis' preparation to tackle the rise in numbers, he said that around 2500 beds are currently designated for COVID cases. He explained that while hospitalization numbers have gone up by 2-3 times in the last 10 days, there aren't too many critical COVID patients as of now.
He said, "The hospitalization numbers have gone up almost by 2-3 times over the last 10 days, which is definitely concerning. But at the moment, we are not seeing too many critical COVID patients getting admitted. Though the numbers have gone up, but the hospitals still have enough capacity available."
"Across our network, we approximately have about 500 plus patients, which is out of the 2500 beds, which we have designated for COVID care. So it is still a smaller percentage, it is about approximately 10 percent of our total admissions at the moment," he mentioned.
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On occupancy, he said that it has come down. "Occupancy was approximately about 65 to 68 percent, that has come down to 60 percent."
On testing, Raghuvanshi said that the numbers have certainly gone up and so has the contribution from COVID testing. He explained that the positivity rate in majority of the laboratories is  above 10 percent. He added that while the positivity rate in Delhi NCR and Mumbai are in low-teens, the rate in Kolkata is at around 18-20 percent.
"Testing numbers have certainly gone up. Currently our COVID contribution has gone up above 25 percent. The positivity rates in most of the labs is above 10 percent. It is variable in different regions. In Delhi NCR for example, we are seeing it in low teens and similar is the experience in Mumbai as well, whereas in Kolkata, we are seeing it even higher, approximately about 18 to 20 percent," he said.
On the lawsuit filed against Fortis and IHH Healthcare, Fortis' parent company by Emqore Envesecure, a US-based fund, he clarified that Fortis never entered into a deal with the trust. Hence, he believes the lawsuit has no merit as the premise itself is frivolous. He shared that the company plans to seek a redressal when they are served.
He said, "I am given to understand that Fortis Healthcare has never had a dealing with this plant. The case is against more than 40 defendants, which includes Fortis Healthcare Limited (FHL) as well as IHH. At the same time, it's important for me to highlight that Fortis has not yet been served with the notice in this case."
"We understand that all the allegations made in this case as they are related to FHL are similar to the allegations which were made earlier in 2017, and 2018, which we had duly disclosed in our annual reports, periodically. We continue to take appropriate legal advice on that," he explained.
"There is no merit in this case and we strongly believe that we would be seeking a dismissal of this as and when we are served. We are extremely confident that this is a very frivolous lawsuit and of course, we will be taking it to the logical conclusion," Raghuvanshi mentioned.
Watch the video for the full interview.