Manipur sees serious oxygen crisis: Collateral damage of COVID -19 patients likely due to lack of proper oxygen supply in the hospitals

IT News
Imphal, May 3:

According to medical science report, a normal person can hardly live without oxygen for 3 minutes (general) forget about those infected by Covid -19. For a person whose oxygen saturation level drops below 90% or when the oxygen saturation level drops by 3% every 6 minutes (say if the level is dropped from 96% to 93%) than the person is definitely in need of medical oxygen support.
During this 2nd wave of COVID -19 pandemic, since April last week, the spike in positive cases is again climbing double every day with the maximum number crossing 250 in the last couple of days. Leaving aside the private hospitals with COVID-19 care ward- the two giant hospitals – RIMS and JNIMS are overcrowded with COVID-19 positive patients. Except for a few almost all patients either in ICUs or in the COVID-19 care wards in these two hospitals needs proper medical oxygen supply that these hospitals demand. However, the recent order by the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare of the government of Manipur dated May 1, 2021, for allocations of Medical Oxygen to the two major government Institutions – RIMS and JNIMS, is likely to put at risk of those severe Covid patients undergoing treatment in the respective hospitals.
As per the order of the Principal Secretary ( Health and Family Welfare) V. Vumlunmang, the number of D-type cylinders allocated for RIMS Hospital is 120. The same is also allocated for JNIMS. A source said that the allocation is made after the crash on the Oxygen Generator Plant taken up under the initiative of the Shija Hospital and Research Institute, depending on the availability of medical oxygen production capacity from the two private Oxygen generator firms – HVS Oxygen Plant, Patsoi and M/s Manipur Gas Pvt. Ltd. Bishnupur.
However, the allocation of medical oxygen by the state authority has been prepared without going into details on the immediate requirement at RIMS and JNIMS. According to source from RIMS hospital alone, a total of 270 D type Oxygen Cylinder is required per day. After the commissioning of the 5 PSA Oxygen Generator plants at RIMS, 50 D-type Oxygen Cylinders has been produced per day but these have been used for the non-Covid patients at Casualty and other non-COVID sections. Still, then the RIMS required 220 number of D-Type Oxygen Cylinder per day. RIMS at present has 10 ICU beds and 62 non – ICU beds for COVID-19 patients at present and all have been occupied, a source from inside RIMS said.
Similar is with JNIMS. The Covid care wards have 98 non-ICU beds at which all are occupied and of the total 98, 94 beds are giving Oxygen Support. There are also 10 ICU beds at which all the patients have been supported by Medical Oxygen. That means the total number of D type Medical Oxygen is nearly or over the requirement at RIMS. But when contacted with the JNIMS authority, they are still yet to find out the exact number of Medical Oxygen requirement per day.
Leaving aside the private hospitals, it is on record that both JNIMS and RIMS required over 200 numbers of D-type Oxygen cylinders. However, the allocation of just 120 –D type Oxygen Cylinder per day by the state government authority has raised serious questions on the safety of COVID patients undergoing treatment at both the hospitals.
It is likely that Manipur may see at least 10 to 15 COVID -19 patients dying due to the non-availability of medical oxygen in the coming days.
When Imphal Times contacted the HVS Oxygen Plant, Patsoi, an authority there informed that they produced 220 D Type Cylinders per day. These Oxygen plant even though is private, has been put under control by the state authority to make sure for compliance with the order of the Principal Secretary.
As for the M/s Manipur Gas Pvt. Ltd. Bishnupur, a source said that they can hardly produce 50% of the total needs of the state. The source also was hesitant in revealing the total medical oxygen that they produce per day and also refuse to comment on the number of oxygen cylinders they supply to their clients.
With all these facts, it is come to know that due to lack of proper preparedness from the site of the government in the allocation of oxygen, the life of those Covid-19 patients undergoing treatment RIMS and JNIMS are at risk and there is a possibility of massive casualty due to shortage of oxygen.

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