As dengue fever assuming dangerous proportions, the Punjab government has set up a field hospital at Lahore’s Expo Centre to deal with a surge in cases of the virus.
Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid inaugurated the hospital on Sunday.
Talking to media later, Dr Yasmin said the health department provided doctors, nurses, paramedical staff, oxygen and medicine supplies at the field hospital.
Dr Asad Aslam Khan has been appointed the focal person of the Expo Field Hospital.
Doctors from Lahore’s General, Services, Jinnah and Mayo hospitals have been deputed at the field hospital. Duty roster of doctors have been placed, she added.
She rejected rumours that there was no shortage of beds for dengue patients in Lahore. The minister said that based on the rise in the number of patients, the numbers of beds were being constantly increased as well.
Dr Yasmin said that a total of 1,209 beds had been reserved for dengue patients including those at the expo field hospitals. The Expo Center field hospital has been made functional for 24 hours and a CBC test will be provided within 45 seconds.
Patients testing positive for the virus will be admitted to hospitals whereas those testing negative will be given medicines, she added.
She said that free treatment will be given to all, clarifying that all tests will be done for free. At present, 28 dengue patients were critically ill, she added.
In case a patient was unable to travel to the hospital, they can contact helpline 1122 after which they will be shifted to a nearby public sector hospital, she added.
The helpline for dengue is 042-99211134-6.
In the last 24 hours, 177 cases were reported in Lahore. Most private hospitals had also reserved beds for dengue with the support of the provincial government. All private labs were conducting dengue tests for Rs90.
She said that the tests can only be conducted on the recommendation of a doctor.
Dr Yasmin said the government hospitals would conduct this test free.
She said Rawalpindi was affected badly during the last wave but this time, Lahore has been hit harder.
In Lahore, surveillance was done for 55,000 homes and larva was found at 1,719 homes. The government was dealing with the coronavirus pandemic and the dengue virus at the same time, she concluded.