Rattled by the severe shortage of oxygen supply in hospitals burdened with COVID-19 patients and the death of 23 patients at a district hospital in Chamarajanagar, the State government on Monday convened a meeting of oxygen manufacturers and suppliers and decided to ramp up the supply of oxygen across Karnataka.
Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa chaired the meeting at his official residence here and instructed officials to take steps to ensure there is no reduction in quantity of oxygen supplied to the State from the Union government quota. He told officials to reduce the time required for filling up oxygen tankers.
In an hour-long meeting with representatives of oxygen manufacturers and suppliers, it was decided that signal-free green corridors would be provided for oxygen tankers to ensure timely supply of the liquid to hospitals. Oxygen manufacturers and suppliers were directed to resolve the issues and problems by approaching the officials concerned directly and to ensure uninterrupted supply of oxygen.
Toll plazas on national highways have been told to ensure free movement of tankers carrying oxygen. In case of shortage of tankers and drivers, officials have been told to utilise LPG tankers and their drivers for faster transportation. At the meeting, it was also proposed to convert nitrogen and argon tankers available for supplying oxygen
Last Saturday, the Chief Minister held a meeting with heads of top private hospitals in the city and promised to provide financial support to set up oxygen plants.
Special Cabinet meeting
With the COVID-19 pandemic crisis deepening in the State during the ongoing 14-day lockdown, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa has convened a special meeting of the State Cabinet at 4 p.m. on Tuesday.
The Cabinet is expected to discuss issues related to the management of the situation, shortage of oxygen and Remdesivir, allotment of beds to patients, and the reasons for the rise in cases. The meeting is also expected to see discussions on the shortage of vaccine doses.