Oxygen shortage in Telangana not ruled out: Eatala

Minister pointed out that instead of allocating oxygen from nearby steel plants such as Vizag Steel Plant and Ballari Steel Plant, the Centre allocated Rourkela Steel Plant in Odisha to TS

By   |  Published: 21st Apr 2021  7:47 pmUpdated: 22nd Apr 2021  12:25 am
File Photo: Eatala Rajender

Karimnagar: Health Minister Eatala Rajender on Wednesday said there was every possibility of Telangana facing oxygen shortage if admission of patients in hospitals continues at the same rate in the coming days.

Stating that allocation of oxygen to states was under the purview of the Union government, the Minister pointed out that instead of allocating oxygen from nearby steel plants such as Visakhapatnam Steel Plant and Ballari Steel Plant, the Centre allocated Rourkela Steel Plant in Odisha to Telangana State.

“Since it is 1,700 km away from Telangana, it takes seven days for oxygen tankers to reach Hyderabad,” he said. Rajender said he had brought the issue to the notice of Union Health Minister Harshavardhan and requested him to allocate nearby steel plants. “We are waiting for a reply from the Centre,” the Minister said, after inaugurating paddy purchasing centers in several villages of Huzurabad constituency.

Though Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, Municipal Administration Minister KT Rama Rao and himself were constantly monitoring the situation and taking all steps to avoid oxygen shortage, there was a possibility of the State facing a problem if the current situation continued, he said.

Rajender said that Hyderabad being a cosmopolitan city, patients from different parts of the State as well as adjacent Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, and Chhattisgarh come to the city for treatment. “Hence, oxygen shortage can crop up if the current situation continues any further,” he said.

Appealing to hospital staff to utilize oxygen judiciously, the Minister asked them not to provide oxygen on demand from patients. “It should be provided only to patients who genuinely require it since it can’t be purchased immediately,” he advised.

Rajender said there was no shortage of Remdesivir injections, and that there was adequate stock of the injection in all government hospitals in the State. “We are taking all possible measures to check black-marketing of injections, and procured three lakh doses of Remdesiver well in advance,” he said.

Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has also taken stringent steps not to give any scope for black marketing of injections and other medicines.

Stating that the government was working round the clock to check the Covid-19, the Minister informed that a committee along with IAS officers was constituted to morning different wings such as injections, vaccination, oxygen and others.

Talking about vaccination, Rajender informed to give vaccine to all the people above the age of 45 years by the end of this month in Karimnagar district. Required doses of vaccine were also kept ready in the district. The Central government was contemplating giving vaccine to people above the age of 18 years from May. People of that age group would also be given vaccine in the state.

So far, Covid has been confined to town only and it has not been entered into rural areas, he said and added that it was the responsibility of sarpanches and its governing bodies to take steps to prevent the virus from entering into villages. Stating that the detection of Covid cases in the state was stable during the last ten days, he advised the people to take all precautionary measures to check the virus since reduction was better than that of any other method.

When asked about the people standing in serpentine queue lines to take vaccines due to a shortfall of centers, he informed that they were establishing vaccination centers in government schools also. Later, Rajender presented silk cloths to lord Rama and Sita on the occasion of Sri Rama Navami held in Illandakunta on Wednesday.

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