As the Coronavirus cases continue to accelerate, the medical oxygen crisis remains a major challenge for many states in India, especially Delhi. For all this while, the Arvind Kejriwal government has been pinning the blame on the central government for the crippling shortage of oxygen in the national capital. However, when the centre proposed to carry out a detailed audit of oxygen utilisation in the national capital, the Delhi Government immediately turned down the request.
While Delhi refused to conduct an audit, a TOI report suggests that the exercise has helped large, dedicated Covid-19 hospitals in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad save over 30 tonnes of oxygen every day.
The civic bodies of the two places have said that auditing has helped them control the pilferage and wastage of the life-saving gas, ultimately helping them save a substantial amount of the critical element per day.
The municipal bodies of Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad believe that the judicious use of medical oxygen and keeping a check on wastage by following simple steps like stopping high flow nasal oxygen (HFNO) when the patient is having food or when not in bed have helped the hospitals save a considerable amount of oxygen.
According to the TOI report, COVID-19 facilities like Sassoon General Hospital in Pune and Pimpri, the Yashwantrao Chavan Memorial Hospital etc are saving at least 6 tonnes of oxygen per day.
S Chokalingam, administrative controller of Sassoon General Hospital said that internal auditing, timely monitoring and checking wastage has helped the hospital bring down the consumption of the gas considerably.
Smita Zagade the deputy commissioner of Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation informed: “Two weeks ago, there were close calls with oxygen supply at our bigger facilities, but the situation has improved a lot since then. The appointment of oxygen nurses, maintaining patients at the right oxygen level, use of prone position and preventing leakage has proved fruitful. the oxygen supply has been streamlined, which has helped us use it judiciously.
Speaking on the same lines, the Dean of the College of Engineering, Pune (CoEP) Jumbo unit, Shreyansh Kapale also shared how internal auditing has helped the hospital to bring down its consumption of medical oxygen from around 22 tonnes to 16 tonnes.
Arvind Kejriwal govt opposes centre’s proposal to conduct an Oxygen audit in Delhi
It’s appalling how smaller cities like Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad are trying to emerge from the crisis by following the simple step of conducting oxygen audits, but Delhi, which is one of the worst affected places has objected to the audit.
In response to the Union Government’s request to carry out a detailed audit of oxygen utilisation in the national capital, the AAP govt said on Thursday that the Supreme Court should instead order an audit to look into the centre’s arbitrary allocation of oxygen and mismanagement of transportation to Delhi and other states.
Since for all this while, the Delhi Govt has been blaming the centre of not providing them with adequate oxygen supplies, the latter had requested an audit to know the real demand for Oxygen in Delhi.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the centre had told the apex court that the central government had already supplied 730 MT of oxygen to Delhi on May 5 (Wednesday), which was more than the Supreme Court’s order asking them to supply 700 MT of Oxygen. He said that some experts believed that Delhi could manage the situation with 500-600 MT with proper distribution and utilisation the way Mumbai has been doing. He had accused the Delhi government of being slow in offloading oxygen from tankers and allowing them to go back for a refill.