Representational picture
Representational picture

BHOPAL: Shortage of ventilators and ICU beds, oxygen and Remdesivir injection has left the health department high and dry in the state as far as the treatment of Covid patients is concerned. On the oxygen front, the state government is managing somehow with supplies from other states, while the supply of Remdesivir in the market is likely to improve after three to four days. The government has announced that it will procure directly from the companies, but the point is that the injection should be available there in the first place.

While patients are moving from pillar to post for ventilators and ICU beds, beds are full—whether in government hospitals or private ones. As far as oxygen supply is concerned, the state government has claimed that Bhilai Steel Plant will supply 60 tons, while 200 tons are being supplied from other states. The daily need in Madhya Pradesh is 130 tons and availability of oxygen is 224 tons.

In view of the increasing number of corona cases, the Madhya Pradesh government had identified 17 oxygen plants in the state in September 2020. Out of these, five large and 12 small plants were producing oxygen and had arrangements for supplying to hospitals. In the rest of Madhya Pradesh, arrangements for oxygen supply from Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Haryana have also been made through vendors. The current wave of the infection has impacted supply and increased demand.

Oxygen is also supplied from Maharashtra and Gujarat. There is a surge in the number of coronavirus patients in both the states. In such a situation, supply of oxygen is being disrupted in Madhya Pradesh, according to sources.

2 types of oxygen

According to health department officials, two oxygen types are used in hospitals— liquid gas made from chemicals and PSA-based gas produced by drawing oxygen from the air. Liquid gas has a purity of 90 per cent and is more commonly used.

Bed, oxygen situation

  • At Hamidia Hospital, the ICU beds are fully occupied

  • However, 169 oxygen-supported beds are still unoccupied and 66 non-oxygen beds are vacant at Hamidia Hospital. All 105 ICU beds are full

  • Similar is the condition at the other hospitals

  • In Bhopal, around 1,500 patients currently undergoing Covid-19 treatment are on oxygen support

  • The oxygen situation in the larger tertiary-care hospitals, such as AIIMS and Hamidia Hospital, is said to be comfortable

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