- PM Modi sanctions procurement 1 lakh portable oxygen concentrators from PM-CARES fund
Prime Minister Narendra Modi sanctioned the procurement of 1 lakh oxygen concentrators from the PM-CARES fund on Wednesday in a bid to increase the supply of medical oxygen in hospitals. The announcement comes after several hospitals reported crisis of medical oxygen as coronavirus disease (Covid-19) cases and deaths soared in states and Union Territories worst affected by the pandemic’s second wave.
The decision for the procurement was taken during a high-level meeting chaired by the Prime Minister on Wednesday. PM Modi also instructed officials that states high case burden should receive these oxygen concentrators as soon as possible.
“1 lakh portable oxygen concentrators will be procured, 500 more PSA oxygen plants sanctioned from PM-CARES. This will improve access to oxygen, specially in district HQs and Tier-2 cities,” the Prime Minister said in a tweet.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday also held meetings with the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria. Both assured the Prime Minister that they are working towards mitigating the shortage faced by states facing difficulties due to lack of medical oxygen.
The DRDO on Wednesday said that it will set up 500 medical oxygen plants within the next three months from the funds allocated by the PM Cares Fund. The Indian Air Force (IAF) also set up a dedicated ‘Covid Air Support Cell’ to ensure faster coordination with different ministries and agencies with connection to Covid-19.
Several hospitals in major cities and adversely-affected states have reported an acute shortage of medical oxygen which has led to the death of several patients infected with Covid-19. India’s allies have also extended their helping hand in a bid to help the nation tide over the crisis presented by the second wave of Covid-19.