In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal reviewed the medical oxygen supply and enhancement of capacity storage in the country. The officials of the Department of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) and ministry of Health and Family Welfare informed that as of now, there is no major problem reported in manufacturing, storage, transport and supply of medical oxygen. It was mentioned that average monthly consumption of medical oxygen was 902 MT in one day in April’20 and had gone upto 1512 MT per day by 15 July. There is sufficient stock of over 15 thousand MT, as of now.
It was observed that the overall position of the present production and supply of medical oxygen, as compared to the total projection of the requirement by end of this month, is comfortable in all the states. In states, metros and districts, where the active cases are large in number, the position of supply and storage is adequate. Similarly, appropriate arrangements have been made for making available medical oxygen at remote places. It was highlighted that percentage of total Covid-19 cases on oxygen including those in ICU, has declined to 4.58% on 16 July. Medical oxygen storage capacity is also being enhanced by almost 10% from 5938 MT, as on 1 March 2020.
According to the press release, all the major manufacturers of cylinders and cryogenic vessels are now registered on Government eMarketplace (GeM), the public procurement portal. Manufacturers of medical oxygen generators are also in the process of registering.
The minister said that the adequate arrangements should be in place for any eventuality or sudden spurt in demand. He directed that special care be taken to make available the oxygen supply in those areas where connectivity is affected at this time of the year due to adverse weather conditions.