Amid the rising demand of medics to battle COVID-19, the department of pharmaceuticals has intensified monitoring of availability, production and supply of drugs used for covid treatment in early April, 2021 as number of cases have started increasing steeply. The central government in efforts with the manufacturing companies has augmented the production capacity of the licensed manufacturers which has led to an unprecedent increase from 38 lakh vials per month to nearly 119 lakh vials per month.
The Centre in a media release stated that with accelerated approval of 38 additional manufacturing sites, the number of approved manufacturing sites of Remdesivir in country has increased from 22 sites to 60 sites. With the help of Ministry of External Affairs, the manufacturers of Remdesivir are being facilitated for getting supplies of requisite raw materials and equipments from foreign countries. "All efforts are being made to enhance the availability of the drug both through imports as well as augmented domestic production," it added.
With a sudden surge in covid cases, the demand for Remdesivir injection has also increased so in order to ensure equitable distribution of the injection among different regions of the country, central government has been making allocations to states and UTs since third week of April. Interim allocation of 11 lakh vials was made for 19 states and UTs with high demand on 21st April for period up to 30th April. Later, this allocation was increased to 16 lakh vials on 24th April as more supplies became available. In a series of allocations issued subsequently, with latest allocation issued on 16th May, 76 lakh vials in total have been allocated among states for period up to 23rd May, 2021.
The Centre have told the state governments and UTs to monitor proper distribution within their jurisdiction covering both government as well as private hospitals and in line with judicious use as advised in the “National Clinical Guidance for management of adult Covid-19 patients” issued jointly by AIIMS/ICMR Covid-19 National Task Force and Joint Monitoring Group of MoHFW.
State Governments / UTs have been advised to place adequate purchase orders with the marketing companies immediately for the quantity that they want to purchase out of allocation for the State/ UT as per supply plan in close coordination with liaison officers of the companies.
Yesterday, Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilisers D.V Sadananda Gowda announced that the allocation of Remdesivir has been made upto 23rd May 2021. "Substantial increase has been made in overall production and allocation of Remdesivir," he added.
He also advised the state governments / UTs to place adequate purchase orders with the marketing companies immediately, if they have not already done so, for the quantity that they want to purchase out of allocation for the State/ UT as per supply chain in close coordination with liaison officers of the companies.