As several hospitals struggle with an acute shortage of medical oxygen amid a raging second wave, the government has given approval for setting up 551 dedicated Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) medical oxygen generation plants inside public health facilities in the country.
“PM has directed that these plants should be made functional as soon as possible. He said that these plants will serve as a major boost to oxygen availability at the district level,” a statement by the PM’s office read.
The plants, to be procured by the Union ministry of health, will be set up in identified government hospitals in district headquarters.
“The basic aim behind establishing PSA oxygen generation plants at Government hospitals in the district headquarters is to further strengthen the public health system and ensure that each of these hospitals has a captive oxygen generation facility. Such an in-house captive oxygen generation facility would address the day to day medical oxygen needs of these hospitals and the district,” the statement read.
“In addition, the liquid medical oxygen (LMO) would serve as a “top up” to the captive oxygen generation. Such a system will go a long way in ensuring that Government hospitals in the districts do not face sudden disruption of oxygen supplies and have access to adequate uninterrupted oxygen supply to manage the Covid-19 patients and other patients needing such support,” it added.
The PM-CARES Fund had earlier this year allocated ₹201.58 crores for the installation of an additional 162 dedicated oxygen plants in government hospitals.
Meanwhile, several hospitals in the country continue to grapple with a scarcity of oxygen and have been left with no option but to use their back up stock.
Delhi’s Fortis Escorts Heart Institute on Sunday stopped the admission of patients due to a shortage of medical oxygen. The hospital said it “out of options”.
“We had timely escalated this impending situation to all authorities and are waiting for promised supplies since yesterday. At the moment we are out of options and suspending new admissions and ER services till the situation improves. We are trying to manage admitted patients to the best of our abilities,” a notice by the hospital read.