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One ICU bed for one million people

Syed Nasir Hossain : How fragile Bangladesh’s health care is needless to say. The coronavirus showed it with a finger in the eye. However, the health care picture of the country has not improved much. In the meantime, an alarming statistic was brought forward by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). According to a report by the organization, Bangladesh has the lowest average ICU beds among countries in Asia and the Pacific region.
ADB’s recently published report titled ‘What Has Covid-19 Taught Us About Asia’s Health Emergency Preparedness and Response?’ shows that Bangladesh has less than one ICU bed per 100,000 people. However, considering the 28 countries in the Asia-Pacific region, there are an average of 6.90 ICU beds per 100,000 people. In addition, Bangladesh is in the back row among 28 countries in terms of general beds in hospitals and other health care indicators. (See Page-2)
(From Page-1)
ADB’s report prepared on what kind of lessons the coronavirus has taught Asian countries has highlighted the position of 28 countries in various healthcare indicators in the Asia-Pacific region. It shows that Taiwan has the largest number of ICU beds in the Asia-Pacific region. The country has 27 ICU beds for every 100,000 people. Kazakhstan comes next with 23 ICU beds per 100,000 people.
South Korea and Azerbaijan ranked third and fourth with 18 and 12 ICU beds per lakh, respectively. At the next position there are three countries at the same time. These are Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Thailand. In these three countries, the number of ICU beds is 10 per lakh. Besides, this number is 9 in Armenia, 8 in Mongolia and 7 in Georgia. India has 6.90 ICU beds and Singapore and Timor-Leste average six ICU beds each.
Sri Lanka, Papua New Guinea, Vietnam, China, Maldives, Afghanistan, Malaysia and Indonesia have between five and three ICU beds per 100,000 people respectively. Fiji, Philippines, Cambodia, Nepal and Pakistan have an average of two or more ICU beds. Myanmar has fewer (one) ICU beds than this. And Bangladesh is in the last position. However, ADB has prepared this report based on the data of 2019. However, this picture has not changed much in the last few years. Rather, many patients died due to lack of ICU beds during Corona.
According to the Ministry of Finance, the number of ICU beds in government hospitals in the country was only 498 in January 2020. And in August 2019, the number of ICU beds in private clinics and hospitals was 737. That is, at that time there were only 1,235 total ICU beds in public and private. At that time the population of the country was about 17 crores. That is, there was not even one ICU bed for every 100,000 people at that time.
At the beginning of 2020, Sheikh Hasina National Institute of Burn and Plastic Surgery in Dhaka had the largest number of ICU beds among government hospitals. There are 80 ICU beds. During Corona they were used to treat covid patients. Among other hospitals, Dhaka Children’s Hospital in Shyamoli has 47 ICU beds, National Heart Institute has 46 beds and Dhaka Medical College Hospital has 32 ICU beds.
Besides, 26 ICU beds in National Orthopedic Hospital, 20 in National Institute of Neuroscience, 13 in National Cancer Institute, 10 in Sir Salimullah Medical College Hospital (Mitford), 10 in Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital, 10 in Mugda Medical College Hospital and 10 in Dhaka Dental College Hospital. has This number is even less in other hospitals of Dhaka.
Outside Dhaka, Rajshahi Medical College Hospital 16, Chittagong Medical College Hospital 12, Sylhet MAG Osmani Medical College Hospital 10, Rangpur Medical College Hospital 10, Dinajpur M Abdur Rahim Medical College Hospital 10, Mymensingh Medical College Hospital 10, Barisal Shere-e – Bangla Medical College Hospital has 10 beds, Sheikh Abu Naser Hospital in Khulna has 10 beds, Feni 250 bed General Hospital has 10 beds, Gopalganj 250 bed General Hospital has 10 beds and Shaheed Tajuddin Medical College Hospital has 10 beds in Gazipur.
On the other hand, Apollo Hospital has the highest number of ICU beds in the private sector till August 2019 with 82. Besides, 40 in Enam Medical College Hospital in Savar, 25 in Impulse Hospital in Tezgaon, 21 in Square Hospital in Panthpath, 19 in Green Life Hospital in Green Road, 17 in Uttara Modern Hospital, 16 in United Hospital (Gulshan), 15 in BRB Hospital (Panthapath) and Bangladesh Specialized Hospital (Shyamoli). There are 15 ICU beds.
Apart from this, there were 14 ICU beds in LabAid Hospital (Dhanmondi), 12 in Popular Medical College Hospital (Dhanmondi), 12 in Islami Bank Hospital (Kakrail), 12 in Azgar Ali Hospital and 11 in Bangladesh Medical College Hospital (Dhanmondi). Other private hospitals include Universal Medical College Hospital (Mahakhali), Dhaka Keya Medical College Hospital (Mohammadpur), Dhaka Metropolitan Hospital (Mahakhali), Anwar Khan Modern Hospital (Dhanmondi), Ad-Deen Medical College Hospital (Moghbazar), Dhaka Central International Medical College Hospital (Shyamoli), Rashmono Specialized Hospital (Moghbazar) and Lubana General Hospital (Uttara) have 10 ICU beds each.
Although the government has continued the process of increasing the quality and benefits of specialized health care, the secretary of the health care department Jahangir Alam said. He told, ‘Government departmental medical colleges are working to increase specialized services in hospitals. The capacity of district hospitals is also being increased. Some district hospitals also have ICUs. ICUs are being increased in institute hospitals of the capital. Growth activities are ongoing processes. The service is being increased every year.

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