Sat | Jun 12, 2021

Gov’t eases hospital oxygen shortage as demand jumps

Published:Friday | May 7, 2021 | 12:22 AM
A health worker takes a nasal swab sample of a person to test for COVID-19 as others wait for their turn outside of a field hospital in Mumbai, India, yesterday.
A health worker takes a nasal swab sample of a person to test for COVID-19 as others wait for their turn outside of a field hospital in Mumbai, India, yesterday.

NEW DELHI (AP):

UNDER ORDER by the Supreme Court, India’s government on Thursday agreed to provide more medical oxygen to hospitals in the capital city of New Delhi, potentially easing a two-week-old shortage that worsened the country’s exploding coronavirus crisis.

Government officials also denied reports that they have been slow in distributing life-saving medical supplies donated from abroad.

The government raised the oxygen supply to 730 tonnes from 490 tonnes per day in New Delhi as ordered by the Supreme Court. The court intervened after 12 COVID-19 patients, including a doctor, died last week at New Delhi’s Batra Hospital when it ran out of medical oxygen for 80 minutes.

On Wednesday night, 11 other COVID-19 patients died when pressure in an oxygen supply line stopped working at a government medical college hospital in Chengalpet in southern India, possibly because of a faulty valve, The Times of India newspaper reported.