GUWAHATI: Himanta Biswa Sarma, Assam's health minister, today asserted at a press conference that the state currently has a surplus of 40 metric tonnes of oxygen as well as ICU beds at this moment.
"Our daily requirement of oxygen is 20 metric tonnes at this moment and Assam currently has 61 mt oxygen in hand," said Himanta Biswa.
Sarma added further, "Currently two plants namely Meghalaya oxygen and Premiere oxygen are producing 50 mt oxygen per day. Apart from that, 8 plants in various parts of Assam are producing 5 mt oxygens as well and we will get 2.9 mt oxygen from a plant situated in Dimapur. Above that, a small plant in Bongaigaon also produces 2.9 mt oxygen daily."
"Hence we have a surplus of 40 mt oxygen for next 12-15 days," Sarma asserted.
Sarma also confirmed that Assam has a sufficient amount of ICU facility beds available.
Currently, there are 2120 beds available in Assam with ICU and oxygen facility against 1852 patients.
430 beds have been arranged in Sarusajai stadium which is going to be in effect from this evening itself.
In Guwahati, an additional 150 ICU beds are available including 92 beds in Gauhati Medical College and Hospital, 24 in Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital, and 38 in Kalapahar Hospital -- against 52 patients at this moment.
"There will be no scarcity of ICU and oxygen facilitated beds in next one or two weeks," claimed Dr. Sarma.
At a cost of Rs 8 crores, 254 ICU beds could be added within the campus of GMCH by reconstructing its parking lodge, he added further.
The second wave of COVID-19 pandemic had put the country under stress, especially the health sector of many ideal states are seeming to be crumbling. Hospitals are overwhelmed with desperate patients. Many states across the country are facing a scarcity of Remdesivir doses, medical oxygens and ICU beds. Patients could be seen laying on footpaths, treated in auto-rickshaws and COVID patients' pyres were seen being burnt on footpath.
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