Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], May 1 (ANI): Dr Rupali Basu, CEO of Woodlands Hospital in Kolkata said her hospital is ready for inoculation of people between 18-44 age group but they don't have vaccine doses as of now to start the vaccination drive.
She said the hospital has written to vaccine manufacturers-- Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech-- but they won't be able to provide vaccine doses till June.
"Phase III of vaccination is different from other phases, we have been asked by the government to write to the manufactures directly for the supply of vaccines. We have written to Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech and they said they won't be able to provide us vaccines till June. We are still in conversation with them. We don't have the vaccine with us but we are ready with staffing, vaccination centre, and process. The moment we get the vaccines, we will start the vaccination," she told ANI
Dr Basu added that she is hopeful that the hospital will receive vaccines by May 5 to start the vaccination of people between the age of 18 and 44.
"In West Bengal, vaccination does not start till May 5 as May 1 is a holiday, and May 2 is election results. May 3 and 4 are also not vaccination days. We are still in conversation with manufacturers and I will be hoping that I will get vaccines by then," she said.
The third phase of the vaccination drive is scheduled to start on May 1 for people aged 18 to 45. The Centre on April 19 had announced a ''liberalised'' policy, making all above 18 years of age eligible to get vaccinated from May 1. It has also allowed state governments and private hospitals to purchase vaccines from manufacturers.
Registration for the new eligible population groups has commenced from 4 pm on Wednesday. Potential beneficiaries can either register directly on CoWIN portal (cowin.gov.in) or through the Aarogya Setu app.
Dr Basu highlighted that an unprecedented amount of medical oxygen consumption is seen in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"There is an unprecedented need for oxygen seen in this wave. Out of 100 COVID beds occupied in my hospital, 70 need oxygen, and all the patients are using a very large amount of oxygen. This kind of oxygen requirement has not been seen before. The smaller hospitals that are using cylinders are not used to such requirements. The entire system is giving away. Though the governments are doing a lot of work to sort this issue," she said.
Talking about the shortage of other resources like beds and medication, she said that the statistics of patients in the second wave his much larger than the first wave and therefore the resources are getting stretched.
"Last year we were prepared to deal with a certain number, and we did not have an issue. We managed the first wave smartly. The second wave came with many different numbers. The statistics are much huge. Beds, medication and other resources are getting stretched because of the sheer volume," she said and added that to manage the crisis, the hospital is "adding more beds on different levels to manage mild, moderate and severe cases."
She added that India is still on the 'up curve' of the second wave, and the government "must think about ways to break the transmission of the virus to control the spread."
"We are still on the up curve and we may see the peek by end of May. To break the up curve we have to break the transmission of the disease. The government much think about ways to break the transmission of the disease," Dr Basu said. (ANI)