38 Medical Bodies in 31 States/UTs Allotted COVID Supplies: Centre

Medical equipment, medicines, oxygen concentrators, ventilators are being provided by several countries

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COVID-19
4 min read
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The Indian government on Tuesday, 4 May, said that as many as 38 medical institutions across 31 states and Union Territories have been allocated the COVID-19 supplies received from the global community for fight against the second wave of the pandemic in India.

"The global community has extended a helping hand in supporting efforts of Government of India in this collective fight against the global COVID-19 pandemic. Medical equipment, medicines, oxygen concentrators, ventilators etc, are being provided by many countries," said the Centre in a statement.

The allocations are done keeping in mind equitable distribution and the load on tertiary health care facilities. In the first few days, the states were covered via the AIIMS and other central institutions where the critical care patients load is high and where the need is highest, the Centre said.

"Besides, the central government hospitals, including DRDO facilities in and around Delhi and in the NCR region were also supplemented through the aid. It has been seen that tertiary health care facilities normally have higher number of cases with severe symptoms of COVID and are often the only succour to people in the region for quality tertiary care," the statement further read.

40 Lakhs Items Distributed to 31 States

According to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, equipment including BiPAP Machines, Oxygen (Oxygen Concentrators, Oxygen Cylinders, PSA Oxygen Plants, Pulse Oximeters), Drugs (Favipiravir and Remdesivir), PPE (Coveralls, N95 masks and gowns) have been distributed to 31 states/Union Territories.

These include – Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Chhattisgarh, D&N Haveli, Delhi, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, J&K, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Ladakh, Lakshadweep, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Odisha, Puducherry, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal.

"As the different tranches are coming in, the rest of the States and UTs will also be covered in the coming days," the Centre said.

India Receives 300 Tonnes of Medical Supplies

In the past five days, India has received 25 flights loaded with 300 tonnes of emergency COVID-19 relief supplies from around the world.

India has received 1.25 lakh oxygen concentrators from the US, 9,000 from Belgium, eight oxygen concentrators from France, and 20 from Russia.

The US has also sent 17 large oxygen cylinders, 423 oxygen cylinders with regulators, 1,028 type-H oxygen cylinders along with N95 masks and rapid test kits.

More than 2,000 vials of Remdesivir from Germany have also been received so far.

Medical supplies and equipments have been received from Ireland, Singapore, Romania, Thailand, Germany, Uzbekistan and Mauritius which includes – 75 ventilators, 150 bedside monitors and two lakh packs of Favipiravir.

Arindam Bagchi, Official Spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs on Tuesday said that a second shipment from Ireland carrying two oxygen generators, 548 oxygen concentrators, 365 ventilators and other medical equipment has also arrived.

Meanwhile, Qatar has sent 300 tonnes of medical supplies, including ventilators, concentrators and PPE kits, in three cargo planes. An oxygen generation plant and 20 ventilators have arrived from Italy.

More than 60 ventilators were sent by the UK. In a second dispatch, at least 723 oxygen concentrators arrived which were handed over to Indian Red Cross.

States Say Supplies Not Received

However, officials in six states had told Scroll.in on Monday that they have not heard from the Centre about whether they will be receiving any share in the emergency supplies.

Tamil Nadu's health department said that they have got no intimation about any state allotment. "We don’t know what has been received by Delhi and for whom it has been received," Principal secretary in the state health department, J Radhakrishnan, told Scroll.in.

Punjab and Bihar State Health Departments also said that they have also not received any emergency supplies. Similar cases were observed in Jharkhand, West Bengal and Odisha.

Pradipta Kumar Mohapatra, additional chief secretary, department of health and family welfare of Odisha said that he has been talking to secretary of the Union department of pharmaceuticals almost every day requesting Remdesivir stock, but have received no help yet.

'Lack of Transparency'

Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera has demanded transparency in the distribution of foreign aid and has requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to make public details of all relief material received by India.

"India has received aid from 40 countries over the past one week. The people of this country have a right to know where the relief material is coming from and where it is going. The government is busy with media management and headline management while people are dying due to shortage of oxygen," said Congress spokesperson Khera.

Meanwhile, AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi took it to Twitter and asked: “Why don’t we know how much material has come and gone where?”

The Delhi High Court has also sought data from the Centre on oxygen concentrators awaiting customs clearance at Delhi airport.

(With inputs from Scroll.in and Hindustan Times)

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