“There was neither any shortage of medical oxygen in the country during last 10 months nor any shortage being faced now. In spite of daily consumption of oxygen, the oxygen supply has been in surplus. Peak consumption of medical oxygen of 2791 MT/day was during 9 to 15 September which has come down to 2503MT/day during second week of October. Now, there is a surplus of 17,103 MT,” Rajesh Bhushan, Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said, in a press briefing.
According to the union health ministry, there were around 43,022 patients on oxygen support as on 1st September, 2020. The number of patients on Oxygen support has increased from 43000 to 75000 in the third week of September. As of now, there are 57000 patients on oxygen support.
The central government has also started the process of installing 246 oxygen generation plants in 18 states and union territories in the first phase. Of these, 67 are at the various stages of completion. Bhushan said that in the second phase, 150 additional plants in 30 states and UTs will also be installed. “As a proactive intervention, the Government is planning to install PSA oxygen generating plants in more than 390 hospitals across the country. In addition to this import of one lakh MT Liquid Medical Oxygen has also been initiated to address any anticipated surge in covid- 19 cases,” said Bhushan.
The government also said that oxygen-supported beds in the country have been increased from around 93,000 in April 2020 to more than 3,80,000 beds (O2 supported beds, ICU beds + Ventilator beds). Similarly, oxygen production capacity has been enhanced from 5913 MT in April 2020 to 6862 MT in September 2020 (7191 MT by the end of Oct, 2020.
The covid-19 cases continue to increase in the country. As on Tuesday the total covid-19 cases swelled to 76,03,003 and the toll reached 115749. India has also recorded over 67 lakh recoveries so far. The government said that country’s Cumulative positivity rate remains below 8% in spite of high number of covid-19 tests conducted (9.6 Crore tests so far).
“As of now only 9.8% of the total covid-19 cases reported are active. Daily Positivity Rate is 4.5% and shows a consistent declining trend. Recovery rate is continuously increasing from around 76% during first week of September to more than 86% as on 20th October,” Bhushan stated.
The active cases have come down from 7.85 lakhs to 7.45 lakhs. In a similar trend, daily new cases have come down from over 69,000 in September to around 46,000 in October. Since 29 July, that is after 84 days, new cases recorded in last 24 hours are less than 50,000.
“India’s cases per million population is 310 whereas world average is 315. Second Surge of covid-19 cases is seen in many countries like Spain, America, UK and France. India still accounts for low deaths per million – at 83 whereas the world average is 142,” said Bhushan. “The daily new cases have come down from over 69,000 in September to around 46,000 in October. Since 29 July, that is after 84 days, new cases recorded in last 24 hours are less than 50,000,” said Bhushan.
Three states, Maharashtra (23.8%), Karnataka (14.19%) and Kerala (12.40%) account for around 50% of the active cases in the county. Tamil Nadu (5.09%), Andhra Pradesh (4.68%) and West Bengal (4.62%) are in successive positions and together account for around 14% of the active cases. Mumbai, Pune, Thane, Nagpur and Ahmednagar are the top five (most affected) districts in Maharashtra, according to the government.
Central teams have been sent to seven states, so far i.e. Karnataka, Kerala, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Bihar & Ladakh. The teams will coordinate with these states/UTs for surveillance, containment, infection prevention control and clinical management.