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MUMBAI: Tata Trusts is upgrading four government hospitals, two each in Maharashtra Uttar Pradesh, to convert them into covid-19 treatment centres and would complete the process by June.

The hospitals are in Sangli (50 beds) and Buldhana (106 beds) in Maharashtra, while in Uttar Pradesh's Gautam Buddha Nagar (168 beds) and Gonda (106 beds). The decision to upgrade the existing infrastructure was to expedite and make use, wherever possible, of the already-available capabilities and services. The Trusts plans to hand over the facilities to the states by June 15, 2020.

The facilities, including both in-patient and out-patient wings, are permanent and will enhance healthcare in their areas, even after the immediate purpose of treating covid-19 patients is met.

Tata Trusts will also establish cancer care facilities and connected service providers to modernise these hospitals. The construction of these hospitals has been undertaken by Tata Projects Ltd, its design by Edifice Consultants Pvt Ltd and the equipment are being sourced from leading manufacturers.

This is the third such intervention of the Trusts to support India in its covid-19 response. The Trusts have already started donating to state governments and individual hospitals personal protection equipment (PPE), including coveralls, N95/KN95 masks, surgical masks, gloves and goggles. So far, PPEs have been supplied to about 26 states and union territories (UTs).

The Trusts have also conducted a pan-India community outreach to induce adoption of health practices, as promoted by the Centre, in rural areas to prevent the spread of covid-19. The exercise, which began on 31 March, is expected to have already reached about 21 million people in 21 states. For wider deployment by any interested organisation, the Trusts have made publicly available through social media about 300 such videos and audio messages, in different languages, and dialects--Dongri, Kumaoni, Ladakhi, Garhwali, Santhali, Mundari, Kutchi and Koborok.

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