New Delhi – Indian hospitals and government leaders on Friday scrambled for oxygen supplies and other emergency aid, as the country has strained the country’s resources due to another record number of new coronovirus infections and rising deaths.
India recorded more than 330,000 new cases in 24 hours, the Health Ministry said on Friday, for the second consecutive day the country set a global record for daily infections. The deaths were reported on Friday at over 2,200, a new high for the country.
Sujit, a Health Ministry official, said that in Delhi, the capital of more than 20 million people, in about half of cases, is testing positive for a more contagious version of the virus, which was found in India last year. Singh did it.
It is unclear how variation is increasing in cases across the country, with large crowds of people and widespread disregard of preventive measures.
Coronovirus deepened on Friday as India’s devastating second wave, Canada joined Britain, Hong Kong, Singapore and New Zealand to intercept the country’s travelers. The US State Department advised the public to raise the country’s risk level to the highest measure against the move to India by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The travel consultant said, “Demand for hospital beds and medical supplies has taxed the capacity of the health care system in many cities, and critical care bed space is severely limited.”
With the mutant strain of virus racing through Delhi, the government of the Capital Region has imposed a one-week lockdown. It has trapped thousands of people, dependent on daily wages, many camping on the banks of the Yamuna River, where they live on twice-daily meals at a Sikh temple.
In Maharashtra, which also includes Mumbai and one of the worst-hit states in India, at least 13 Kovid-19 patients died on Friday after a hospital fire damaged a faulty air-conditioning unit. Two days ago, at least 22 patients died in a hospital in Nashik city, Maharashtra, after the leak stopped their oxygen supply.
Facing criticism for handling the second wave of his government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi canceled plans to cancel a trip to West Bengal for a campaign rally ahead of elections in that state.
Even as matters progressed, Shri Modi’s rule continued with the Bharatiya Janata Party and other parties, holding massive rallies with thousands of people. The government has allowed a huge Hindu festival to attract millions of pilgrims despite indications that it has accelerated the spread of the virus.
“Leadership really matters. We saw the initial relaxation of appropriate measures. The election rallies continued, and the religious festivals turned into superspreader events, ”said Krishna Udayakumar, an associate professor of global health and director of the Duke Global Health Innovation Center.
Mr. Udayakumar said, “The opportunity to learn from the first wave was lost.” This was the initial wave in August and September, months after abandoning the nationwide lockdown that crippled India and the economy.
Now the impending disaster in India is playing differently on social media, with Twitter feeds and WhatsApp groups broadcasting for oxygen and medicines in hospitals and desperate searches of families for beds in overwhelmed Kovid-19 wards . With the lack of ventilators in many hospitals, television news reports show patients inside ambulances parked outside emergency rooms struggling to breathe.
April 23, 2021, 3:51 pm ET
Swati Maliwal, an activist and politician in Delhi Tweeted Her grandfather died while waiting outside a hospital in Greater Noida near New Delhi.
“I stood there for half an hour and begged for entry and nothing happened,” she wrote. “Have some Shame! Pathetic! “
On 15 April, Ministry of Health said in a statement India had a daily production capacity of about 7,700 tonnes of oxygen, with 55,000 tonnes in the reserve. Not all of this goes for medical use – some are used for industrial purposes, including India’s huge steelmaking industry.
On 21 April, a government official told the Delhi High Court that beyond daily production capacity, medical demand had reached 8,800 tonnes per day.
Mr. Modi’s government is in charge of allocating the supply of national oxygen, and on Thursday the Supreme Court of India gave the government a week to come up with a “national plan” for distribution. The Health Ministry was asked to issue a purchase order for importing 55,000 additional tonnes of oxygen.
Oxygen is difficult to store and transport, and is not usually manufactured near the largest cities in India, which are now turning into cases with sudden spikes.
The states have accused each other of collecting oxygen from across the border and stopping the tankers. The robbers stole several cylinders of oxygen from a delivery tanker at a hospital in Madhya Pradesh.
At least three states, including Madhya Pradesh, have asked Mr. Modi’s government to send so-called Oxygen Express trains with large oxygen tanks to hospitals.
On Thursday, Fortis Healthcare, one of the top hospital chains in India, tweeted an SOS message to Mr. Modi and his chief deputy, Amit Shah, for the Minister of Home Affairs, Appeal for more oxygen in a hospital In the state of Haryana, on the Delhi border.
The company wrote, “Fortis Hospital in #Hariana has only 45 minutes of oxygen left.”
Four hours later, the hospital received a tanker, the company tweeted.
It was not clear whether each hospital with a significant need for oxygen was meeting on time.
Arvind Kejriwal, the top elected official in Delhi, said the city needed a daily supply of 770 tonnes of oxygen. Mr. Modi’s government has allocated 530 tonnes.
At Delhi’s AIIMS Hospital, India’s leading research hospital, contact tracing between health care workers was suspended because according to Srinivas Rajkumar, a representative of the Resident Doctors Association, there were not enough staff for the exercise.
Starting on Saturday, all 18-year-olds or older residents of India can register for the Kovid-19 vaccine, but demand is expected to be far removed from the supply. So far, more than 135 million people, about a tenth of India’s population of 1.4 billion, have received at least one dose. Two vaccines have gained emergency use authorization along with at least five others in the pipeline.
Oxygen was well supplied to Kovid Hospital, a hospital in the neighborhood of Bandra, Mumbai, but the vaccination center stopped operation after vaccination.
Karan Deep Singh contributed reporting.