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Ensure Prompt Supply Of COVID Vaccines To Prevent A Possible Third Wave : Madras High Court To Centre, Vaccine Companies

Sparsh Upadhyay
6 May 2021 1:30 PM GMT
Ensure Prompt Supply Of COVID Vaccines To Prevent A Possible Third Wave : Madras High Court To Centre, Vaccine Companies
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Taking up its own-motion petition relating to monitoring the COVID-19 response in the state of Tamil Nadu & Puducherry, the Madras High Court on Thursday (May 6) made an appeal to the Centre and vaccine manufacturers to ensure prompt supply of vaccines to the state.The Court noted that State's allocation at present was 10.3 lakh units, out of which 7.65 lakh would be supplied by one of...

Taking up its own-motion petition relating to monitoring the COVID-19 response in the state of Tamil Nadu & Puducherry, the Madras High Court on Thursday (May 6) made an appeal to the Centre and vaccine manufacturers to ensure prompt supply of vaccines to the state.

The Court noted that State's allocation at present was 10.3 lakh units, out of which 7.65 lakh would be supplied by one of the vendor and 2.65 lakh units by the other and that the payment for all of the 10.3 lakh units had been made to immediately receive the vaccines and start the universal adult inoculation program.

Noting thus, the Court requested the Centre and the vendors to ensure prompt supply so that preventive measures may be taken at the earliest to stop the proliferation of cases and the possible third wave that is being talked of.

Oxygen supply

The Court also appealed for equitable distribution of resources to all the states, and ensure that lives are not lost for want of Oxygen.

A Division Bench comprising of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy remarked,

"No Court of a State or no State can demand all the facilities for itself to the exclusion of others; but there has to be an equitable distribution, reckoning the production capacity in a particular State and the position should not be altered to the detriment of a State"

Importantly, the Union and the empowered committee were asked by the High Court to take immediate steps to ensure an adequate supply of oxygen to the State of Tamil Nadu by tomorrow to meet the needs.

The Court added that the issue was critical and it required the attention of the highest offices so that lives are not lost for want of oxygen

Also, noting that the Defence Research and Development Organisation had installed oxygen generating machines in some hospitals elsewhere at extremely short notice and at costs that are affordable, the Court said,

"The State and the Union should facilitate the setting up of such units, if feasible, in this State, particularly in the larger cities, including Chennai, Coimbatore and Madurai."

However, it is not necessary to impose conditions on beleaguered officials and administration at this stage and to allow them to function as freely as possible and without directions of Court confusing matters. It is only an appeal that the citizens' needs be met and for such purpose whatever is in the power of the authorities may be done to prevent further suffering

Availability of beds

Regarding the availability of beds, the Court noted that the State appeared to be doing well, though 95% of the beds having oxygen supply remain occupied, however, the Court was informed that a large proportion of the available beds do not have oxygen supply.

To this, the officials assured the Court that measures have been initiated to augment bed capacity, including oxygenated bed capacity and that such augmented bed capacity would be available shortly.

Availability of Remdesivir & Tocilizumab

The Court was informed that the allocated quantity of Remdesivir for the State since April, 2021 was 1.35 lakh units against the order placed of 2.5 lakh units. The officials said that about 24,000 units have been distributed from the Kilpauk center upon the appropriate documents being produced.

Further, it was informed that measures are being taken, including at the behest of the Government to take charge from tomorrow, to set up centers in other major cities, including Madurai and Coimbatore for release of Remdesivir directly to private hospitals or patient parties.

Regarding Tocilizumab drug (which is used only for critical patients), the Court noted that at present, 315 vials of such drug have been made available to the State, of which 20 have been supplied to private hospitals upon appropriate checking of the details furnished.

Vaccination


Issues related to Medical facilities in Puducherry

Lastly, the Court observed that it was not necessary to impose conditions on beleaguered officials and administration at this stage and to allow them to function as freely as possible and without directions of Court confusing matters.

"It is only an appeal that the citizens' needs be met and for such purpose whatever is in the power of the authorities may be done to prevent further suffering," added the Court.

More details about today's hearing could be read here - Take Immediate Steps By Tomorrow To Ensure Adequate Oxygen For Tamil Nadu: Madras High Court Directs Centre

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