Amid the burgeoning Covid crisis and acute shortage of medical oxygen, the defence ministry has decided to airlift 23 mobile oxygen generating plants from Germany. An Armed Forces Medical Services spokesperson said as many 23 mobile oxygen generation plants have been ordered from Germany, and these will arrive within a week. Each plant can produce 2,400 litres of oxygen per hour. “At this rate, it can cater to 20-25 patients round the clock.
The advantage of these plants is that they are easily portable,” the official said. The military and other wings of the defence ministry have been ordered to respond on war footing to fight the outbreak that has so far claimed nearly 185,000 lives.
Principal Spokesperson in the Defence Ministry A Bharat Bhushan Babu said the plants will be deployed in the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) hospitals treating COVID-19 patients.
The decision by the ministry came four days after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh announced granting emergency financial powers to the three services and other defence agencies to make necessary procurement to enhance medical infrastructure in view of the pandemic. “Twenty-three mobile oxygen generation plants are being airlifted from Germany. These will be deployed in AFMS hospitals catering to the COVID patients,” Babu said.
Another official said the Indian Air Force has been told to remain ready to keep its transport aircraft ready to bring the plants from Germany once required paper works are completed. The official said more oxygen generation plants may be procured from abroad. “The advantage of these plants is that they are easily portable,” said Babu.
India is struggling with a second wave of coronavirus infection and hospitals in several states are reeling under shortage of medical oxygen and beds in view of rising COVID-19 cases. The country reported 3,32,730 new COVID-19 cases and 2,263 deaths because of the infection in the preceding 24 hours as of Friday morning.