Chandigarh, 8th May,2021: The Government of India has fixed the daily quota of 20 MT of medical oxygen for UT, Chandigarh from M/s INOX Barotiwala. This medical oxygen is being utilized for GMCH-32, GMSH-16 and the COVID Hospital at Sector-48, Chandigarh. Private Health Care Institutions are also being catered from this Quota of oxygen. Additionally, three Oxygen generation plants have been commissioned recently in these hospitals.
2. The Private Health Care Institutions in the Chandigarh also require medical oxygen and they are mostly dependent upon medical oxygen in cylinders. The oxygen cylinders are used by the Government Hospitals also in ambulances and during shifting the patients from one ward to other. The requirement of medical oxygen for PGIMER is met out from a separate quota.
3. Considering increase in number of beds in the COVID Wards & ICU and influx of more patients, the consumption of oxygen has suddenly increased. To ensure smooth supply of oxygen to all the Health Care Institutions in Chandigarh, the Administration has taken following steps in last few days:
i. Officers have been stationed at the INOX Plant at Barotiwala, Baddi in Himachal Pradesh.
ii. Police Escort has been provided to the Oxygen Tankers from INOX Plant to Chandigarh to reduce the travel time and avoid any untoward incident
iii. Three Private Refilling Vendors have been authorized for re-filling medical oxygen from the quota of UT Chandigarh.
iv. The rate for re-filling of Oxygen Cylinders has been fixed at par with the approved rate of GMCH-32
v. Officers have been stationed at the premises of the Private Refilling Vendors to ensure that oxygen cylinders are being issued in regulated manner and there is no diversion from the UT Quota.
vi. Round the clock police security has been provided at one of the Oxygen generation plant in Industrial Area, Chandigarh. The reason of security was two incidents where some of the influential persons, who were not eligible, pressurized the vendor to take away the oxygen cylinder.
vii. A senior PCS officer has been deputed to see supply of oxygen to private hospitals and daily Quota has been fixed for each of the Private Hospitals in Chandigarh.
viii. Each of the private hospital has been attached with either of the Private Vendor to avoid confusion and regulate the actual supply in better way.
ix. Efforts are being made to have some back-up arrangements from Punjab/Haryana to get oxygen on loan basis, in case of any crisis.
x. The voluntary organizations who has come forward to set-up Mini-COVID Centers have been requested to have own arrangements of oxygen through concentrators.
4. Today a team of senior officers of the Administration visited the oxygen generation plant at Industrial Area Chandigarh and the oxygen re-filling plant at Derabassi. During the surprise visit of oxygen re-filling centers, it was observed that:
i. The process of re-filling of oxygen cylinders was going on smoothly.
ii. Proper security has been provided by the Police.
iii. The pressure of oxygen in the cylinders was randomly checked and found to be correct. Hence there was no issue short supply.
iv. The rates fixed by the Administration were being charged
v. The daily quota fixed for the Private Hospitals was being followed.
5. Here it is mentioned that previously some of the Private Hospitals were consuming excess quantity of oxygen. One private Hospital was taking abnormal quantity of about 400 cylinder per day while another hospital of almost same capacity was consuming about 90 cylinders only. The consumption of each of the private hospital was examined with regard to its capacity and bed reserved for COVID patients. The Sr. Doctors from the Government Hospitals could not analyze and find out the possible reasons for such an abnormal consumption by that Private Hospital. According to them, it seems almost impossible to consume such quantity even when all the patients were on ventilators. The issue has been taken seriously and it has been decided that a detailed inquiry to be carried out in this regard. Thereafter appropriate actions will be taken against the authorities of the hospital, in accordance with findings of the inquiry.
6. It has also been decided that a team of senior doctors from GMCH-32 and GMSH-16 will visit Private hospitals and Government Hospitals in next week. The purpose of the visit will be to educate and sensitize them for optimum utilization of oxygen, which is a precious commodity. According to Sr. Doctors, some of the reasons for wastage can be as follows:
i. There is leakage in the oxygen pipelines and outlets.
ii. Oxygen valves are left open sometimes
iii. Oxygen masks are not fitted property over the face of the patients.
iv. The guidelines to maintain the saturation at 94 instead of 100 is not being followed.
v. Flow of oxygen is incorrect for the requirement of the patients.
7. Shri Manoj Parida, Adviser to Administrator informed that after above corrective measures, now there is sufficient availability of medical oxygen for both Government and Private Hospitals. However, the Central Government has been requested to increase the quota of Oxygen from 20 MT to 35 MT to take care the increasing bed capacity, newly set-up Mini COVID Care Centers and to take care of unforeseen eventualities. Shri Parida said that strict action will be taken in case of any wastage/diversion/hoarding of the oxygen by any person in UT Chandigarh.