Maha govt wants pvt hospitals with over 50 beds to set up oxygen generation plant

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Mumbai, Apr 15 (PTI) Amid reports of shortage of medical oxygen in Maharashtra, Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Thursday said that each private hospital in the state with more than 50 beds should set up an oxygen generation plant to ensure availability of this life-saving gas for treatment of patients.

He said this in a press conference, where he shared a fresh set of instructions for hospitals.

'All private hospitals with more than 50 beds should set up an oxygen generation plant. These hospitals will no longer rely on the state government for the supply of medical oxygen, which can be provided to the COVID-19 patients,' he said.

Hospitals with less than 50 beds have been asked to procure oxygen concentrators, which can increase the supply of oxygen to patients, the minister said.

'The technology of oxygen concentrators involves collection and purification of air up to 95 to 98 per cent before it is administered to patients. It is viable and affordable. It will reduce the load on the state infrastructure over procuring liquid medical oxygen from other states and supplying it to hospitals,' he added. He also admitted that there has been overuse of oxygen in treating patients.

The state COVID-19 task force members and experts have pointed out that the overuse of oxygen cylinders was creating a shortage of the life saving gas.

“The current usage (oxygen) is 1,500 metric tonnes on a daily basis. As per the Centre's guidelines, Bhilai in Chhattisgarh, Telangana and industrial cities like Bokaro (Jharkhand), Rourkela (Odisha), Hazira and Jamnagar (Gujarat) are supplying oxygen to Maharashtra. A committee of commissioners of health and transport departments and the FDA has been set up. It is headed by the commissioner of health. It will coordinate with the states concerned and monitor the oxygen supply.” The nitrogen-supplying large tankers are being readied for oxygen supply. The first batch of 50 such tankers will be ready soon, which will carry liquid oxygen to Maharashtra, the minister said. PTI ND NP