Patients struggled to get admission in overcrowded hospitals in Delhi, as this year's dengue outbreak is the worst since 2010. Dengue has claimed five lives and affected 1,872 people even as the peak dengue period (September-October) lay ahead.
Municipal corporations said, in the past week alone, three people had died and at least 613 new cases reported in the city. Delhi's worst dengue outbreak of 2010 had seen 1,933 cases in the same period.
Experts said the government's unpreparedness had exacerbated the crisis, resulting in shortage of hospital beds. Patients, even those who can pay, were finding it difficult to get a bed in hospitals.
Ritesh Verma, a resident of Punjabi Bagh in West Delhi said "My mother, who is a cancer survivor, has been suffering with dengue for three days. I really had to struggle to find a bed even in a private hospital. She is currently admitted in the ICU of a top hospital but then I have to shell out nearly Rs 20,000 per day for treatment"
Nikhil Kumar said that smaller nursing homes are making use of the situation and are milking the situation to their advantage. "I got my friend admitted in a private nursing home because there were no beds available at AIIMS. They ran a battery of tests on him, kept him on intravenous fluid throughout and even administered platelet twice a day. The total bill came to Rs 42,000. I know of people who have spent above Rs 1 lakh on dengue treatment at bigger private hospitals," he said.
Since September and October are considered as peak season for dengue the number of dengue cases are more likely to increase. Dengue follows a cyclical trend.