The Union Ministry of Health has said that 100 hospitals across the country will have their own oxygen plants under the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM-Cares) Fund.
Covid patients are facing problems as hospitals in 12 states across the country have not been able to set up the scheme in hospitals in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The central government is being asked to immediately set up the facility in hospitals where oxygen plants are not available.
The decision was taken at a meeting of Empowered Group 2 (EG2) which was held yesterday to review the availability of essential medical equipment and oxygen during COVID. The Ministry said, Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) plants manufacture oxygen and help hospitals become self-sufficient in medical oxygen.
The Empowered Group 2 has directed the Health Ministry to identify 100 hospitals in far flung locations for consideration of sanction for installation of PSA plants.
The Health Ministry in a statement said that Medical oxygen is a critical component in the treatment of COVID patients. There has been increasing demand for medical oxygen, especially from states like Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan.
In view of increasing demand for medical oxygen, the Empowered Group has also decided to float a tender for import of 50 thousand Metric Tonnes of medical oxygen.
The Health Ministry has been directed to finalise the tender. It has also been asked to explore possible sources for import identified by the missions of Ministry of External Affairs.
The Empowered Group 2 is monitoring the situation of demand and supply of medical oxygen continuously to ensure that all necessary steps are taken to support the uninterrupted supply of medical oxygen.