Madhya Pradesh, among the 10 States that account for 84% of the new daily cases in the latest surge of COVID-19, is also facing a shortage of medical oxygen as well as the crucial drug remdesivir, used to treat infected patients and reduce time in hospital. The State has been placed under a 60-hour lockdown since 6 p.m. on Friday till 6 a.m. on Monday.
Reports of shortage of oxygen and drugs have come in not only from Bhopal but also Indore, the State’s commercial capital where a large number of attendants of corona patients staged a protest at the Dawa Bazar. Jabalpur also witnessed similar protests over lack of supplies for patients.
The State government has said all possible arrangements have been made for dealing with the surge in cases and maintaining supplies of drugs and oxygen amid reports in the local media of remdesivir being sold at many times its retail price.
Addressing a virtual meeting of the Cabinet on the pandemic, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said the oxygen supply in the State had been tripled in the past three days to 180 metric tonnes. He added that one lakh Remdesivir injections will be made available in the State every month.
Orders for 50,000 Remdesivir injections have been issued for patients and the supply has also started, the Chief Minister said.
One lakh beds are being arranged in the State, said an official adding that CT scan facilities will be provided at all district hospitals.
Madhya Pradesh has recorded 4,882 coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours. The overall official death toll in the State due to COVID-19 has crossed 4,000.