The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has debunked claims that ventilators procured through the PM CARES Fund and supplied to Aurangabad were not functioning properly. The clarification came after Congress leader Sachin Sawant from Maharashtra has alleged a scam citing the alleged malfunctioning.
The Ministry has said that the ventilators in question were not procured through the PM CARES Fund.
The MoHFW said in a statement, “Ventilators manufactured by Jyoti CNC were supplied to Aurangabad Medical College. Jyoti CNC is one of the manufacturers of “Make in India” Ventilators. They have supplied ventilators centrally for COVID-19 management, as per the directions of Empowered Group-3. These ventilators were then made available to States as per the requests made by States. This supplier is not funded under PM CARES fund.”
Due to the shortage of ventilators during the initial days of the pandemic, local manufacturers encouraged to produce ventilators in adequate numbers. Many among them had no prior experience in ventilator manufacturing. However, it was only after proper screening, testing and clinical validation that the ventilators were put into supplies. Jyoti CNC was one such manufacturer.
The Ministry stated, “On 23rd April (i.e. 04 days after successful installation of ventilators the Hospital authorities at GMC Aurangabad, a complaint was received telephonically informing that 08 ventilators were not functioning. The engineers went to the site and found that flow sensor (proximal) had not been installed in 03 ventilators by the Hospital. All 08 were recalibrated by the service engineers of the vendor. 01 ventilator had oxygen cell which was not functioning. A fresh oxygen cell was reinstalled and this ventilator also made functional and commissioned subsequently.”
“Jyoti CNC received a call on 10th May, 2021 informing that two ventilators have been used in ICU. Out of these, one on NIV (Non-Invasive (BiPAP) mode), is not being able to ensure saturation of the patient. The authorities said that this may be checked outside the ICU. The same was examined by the team of service engineers & was found to be in functional condition and the team returned after satisfying the Hospital authorities. This was put back in operation on a patient on night of 12th May 2021 on NIV mode,” it stated further.
The Ministry added, “On 13th May afternoon Jyoti CNC was informed telephonically that they are not being able to get optimum PEEP. The technical team visited the hospital in the afternoon. However, by then the same ventilator had been put on the patient in invasive mode. The Ventilator was working on the patient on invasive (IV) mode and it was working perfectly fine on the patient.”
In at least one instance, it was observed that the problem was caused by improper mask fitting, which is corrected by proper mask size and fitting on the patient. The statement further said that the ventilator was functioning in the Invasive Mode.
GMC Aurangabad has requested that the 22 ventilators installed be demonstrated and re-commissioned before the hospital team and the team of engineers with Jyoti CNC will ensure the same over today (Friday) and tomorrow (Saturday).