As many states in the country continue to grapple with oxygen shortage, the Kerala government has said it has a reserve of 510 metric ton of the life-saving gas at production centres post-delivery.
The government is now mulling the possibilities of increasing the reserve stock upto 1000 MT to meet any adverse situations, authorities said.
In the wake of the number of COVID-19 cases crossing the 30,000 mark in the southern state, Health Minister K K Shailaja convened a special high-level meeting on Tuesday to review the availability of oxygen.
In view of the grim situation, it has been decided to set up audit committees in the state, district and hospital levels for the effective utilisation of the available oxygen in the state, she said.
“At present, 220 metric tonnes (MT) of medical oxygen is available in government hospitals. Around 100 MT of oxygen is required for COVID and non-COVID treatments. After distribution, we have around 510 MT oxygen as reserve at production centred now,” Shailaja said.
The meeting also discussed the possibilities of increasing the reserve capacity to 1000 MT to fight any sorts of emergencies. District collectors were apprised of the requirements of oxygen based on the treatment facilities being set up in their concerned districts.
“The meeting also decided to take steps to avoid oxygen leakage at the treatment centres and give training to those officials handling oxygen cylinders,” the minister said in a release.
Necessary steps would be taken to provide oxygen tankers the road clearance of ambulances, based on the directions issued by the central government, the statement added.
Venugopal Nambiar, in-charge of south India regulatory of Oxygen, Petroleum & Explosives Safety Organization (PESO), Health Secretary Rajan Khobragade, National Health Mission state director Rathan Khelkar, district collectors and other participated.
In the highest single day surge so far, Kerala recorded 32,819 cases, including 86 health workers, as the active cases soared to over 2.47 lakh on Tuesday. PTI