Oxygen in India Today: Foreign supply, Railways, southern States

2 More Indian Navy Ships Bring Oxygen To K’taka From Kuwait

Two more Indian Navy ships, INS Kochi and INS Tabar, reached Karnataka’s New Mangaluru port with 100 MT of liquid medical oxygen from Kuwait, a defence official said on Tuesday.

“As part of operation Samudra Setu-2, the two naval ships brought 100 tonnes of liquid medical oxygen in 5 containers and 1,200 cylinders from Kuwait,” the official said in a statement here.

The ships sailed from Shuwaikh port in Kuwait on May 6.

The latest consignments were in addition to 30 tonnes of oxygen that were brought to the port city on Monday in INS Kolkata in 2 containers and 400 cylinders from Kuwait and Qatar.

The shipment has been delivered to Indian Oil Corporation for supplying the gas to the state, the statement added.

First Oxygen Express to Karnataka chugs into Bengaluru

The first Oxygen Express to Karnataka with six cryogenic containers chugged into the city’s Whitefield railway station, an official said on Tuesday.

“The Oxygen Express came from Tatanagar in Jharkhand’s Jamshedpur,” a Western Railway Zone official said.

The railways created a signal-free green corridor for a non-stop run of the 1,833 km route from Tatanagar to Bengaluru, which was covered in nearly 30 hours.

“With 20 MT of liquid medical oxygen in each container, 120 MT of the gas were transported from Jharkhand to Karnataka,” said the official.

The state government sought the railways’ help in ferrying the liquid medical oxygen from Tatanagar for supplying hospitals across the state.

“A ramp was built at the satellite goods terminal for unloading the oxygen containers safely,” said the official.

The Indian Railways have been operating Oxygen Express trains across the country over the last three weeks to speedily deliver the gas in various states for meeting the growing demand to treat Covid patients amid the pandemic’s second wave.

“Till date, the railways ran 75 Oxygen Express trains to deliver 4,700 MT to Delhi, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh,” added the official.

Oxygen Express With 120MT Of LMO Reaches Bengaluru

Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday said that Oxygen Express with six containers of medical oxygen has arrived in the Karnataka capital from Jharkhand to provide relief.

In a tweet, Goyal said, “In order to provide relief to Covid-19 patients, Oxygen Express from Tatanagar has reached Bengaluru via Green corridor, with six containers of medical Oxygen.”

He also attached a video of the Oxygen Express entering the Bengaluru station with 120 MT of Oxygen.

3rd express with 64T O2 reaches Hyderabad

The third Oxygen Express from Angul in Odisha to Telangana reached Hyderabad on Wednesday, South Central Railway officials said.

The train carrying five tankers loaded with 64.24 tonnes of Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) arrived at Sanath Nagar Station.

It was on May 9 the Express with empty tankers started from Sanathnagar New Goods Complex to MBMB siding (M/s. Tata Steel BSL Ltd.,) Angul in Odisha, where they were filled with LMO.

The first Oxygen Express for Telangana with five tankers loaded with 124.26 tonnes of LMO had reached Hyderabad on May 2.

The second Oxygen Express carrying 60.23 tonnes of Liquid Medical Oxygen (LMO) in four tankers arrived on May 4. All the three trains arrived from Odisha.

Indian Railways have started operating Oxygen Express trains on a mission mode to meet the Oxygen requirement in different parts of the country. Under this initiative, tankers filled with Liquid Oxygen are being transported by Railways through Ro-Ro (Roll on – Roll Off) service, South Central Railway (SCR).

In this way, the transportation of these tankers can be achieved with minimum enroute detention. As part of this initiative, SCR operated three oxygen expresses.

The Zone had proactively identified the station capable of handling the Oxygen Express in the twin cities area. Immediately, on receipt of the request from the state government, the originating station as well the Green Corridor to move the Oxygen Express was mapped till the destination station.

The Green Corridor is mapped so as to ensure faster movement of these tankers. As height is one of the important aspect of moving the tankers by trains, the green corridor is mapped taking into consideration various constraints like curves, Road Over Bridges, platform canopies, overhead equipment etc., along the route.

Considering its importance, the movement of these trains is being monitored continuously at the apex level. Gajanan Mallya, General Manager, SCR advised the officials to continue taking proactive steps in case of any request for further Oxygen Express movement over the zone.

Karnataka launches Oxy Bus service for Covid patients outside hospitals

Taking a leaf out of Chennai NGO Oxygen on Wheels’s playbook, Karnataka on Tuesday launched its own version – OxyBus service – to aid Covid patients during emergencies.

After the Covid second wave hit the state in mid-March and intensified in April, the health care infrastructure is facing a daunting task of saving patients during the golden hour. Hospitals across the state are crumbling due to shortage of life saving equipment such as ventilators and oxygen concentrators.

Chief Minister B. S. Yediyurappa in his Tweet said that each makeshift OxyBus supports up to eight patients.

Last week, Chennai-based Jain International Trade Organisation (JITO) launched the relief project ‘Oxygen on Wheels’ in association with the Greater Chennai Corporation to address the Oxygen deficit faced by hospitals across the city.

Karnataka Health department officials said that through this Critical Golden hour initiative, the government is hoping to save as many lives as it can and also to minimize the casualty that could arise as a result of non-availability of beds.

“We plan to launch 20 such units near state run medical facilities such as hospitals and Triage centres in Bengaluru in its first phase while many more units will be set up across the state shortly,” Yediyurappa said.

Earlier, the CM visited the ‘Arogya Soudha’ and BBMP (Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike) war room in Malleshwaram to review the functioning of the bed allocation system and citizen helpline.

“We are ensuring transparency and efficiency in the system for timely availability of beds to Covid patients,” he claimed.

Answering the question, the CM also said that there was no shortage of anti-Covid vaccines for any age group including 18 to 44 years, which is the state government’s initiative. “I only appeal to youngsters not to crown in front of vaccination centres unless they are registered and they have received the scheduled appointment date for their vaccine by the government,” he explained.

The CM asserted that there will be no shortage of vaccine whatsoever.

Chennai Corporation hands over 300 oxygen concentrators to govt hospitals

The Greater Chennai Corporation has handed over 300 oxygen concentrators to the government hospitals in the city for the treatment of Covid-19 patients.

A total of 50 concentrators were handed over to the Covid care centre at the Stanley Medical College, 33 to the Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital, 50 to the Kings Institute Guindy, 80 to the Communicable Diseases Hospital in Tondiarpet, 40 to the Chennai Trade Centre and 40 to the Kodambakkam Meenakshi Care Centre. As many as 293 of the total 300 oxygen concentrators received have been distributed till now.

The oxygen concentrators were donated to the Tamil Nadu government by companies like OLAM International and Temasek in the presence of Chief Minister M.K. Stalin. The Chief Minister had in turn called upon the Corporation to distribute the oxygen concentrators to the various hospitals in the city involved in the treatment of Covid patients.

An 114-bed Covid care facility is being set up at the Tondiarpet Communicable Diseases Hospital. Newly appointed Greater Chennai Corporation Commissioner Gagan Singh Bedi has visited the facility and held a meeting with the top officials from the hospital, police and the revenue department.

Chennai is witnessing a spike in Covid cases and the Corporation has already taken a decision to appoint 2,000 focus volunteers in addition to the present 2,000.

The state government has also requested the Centre for 20,000 vials of Remdisivir amid reports of huge queues in front of the hospitals selling the drug.

Chennai to roll out oxygen parlours for Covid patients

Amid spiralling coronavirus cases, the Greater Chennai Corporation has decided to roll out “oxygen parlours” for Covid patients across three regions of the city.

Each region will have a 100-bed hospital with oxygen facility. This will be for people who have breathing difficulty and whose oxygen saturation is between 90-92, but still need the oxygen support.

Greater Chennai Corporation Commissioner Gagan Singh Bedi has said that the corporation has already ordered for oxygen concentrators and 2,700 of them will reach the city soon.

The Chennai corporation has also made some changes regarding the RT-PCR tests and the report of the test will not be given directly to positive patients.

Doctors will first check the blood pressure, oxygen saturation and respiration rate of the patient. Based on these parameters doctors and medics will decide whether the patient needs home isolation or treatment at a hospital.

The corporation will also provide a medical kit immediately to all patients who are undergoing an RT-PCR test with symptoms of fever, loose motion, loss of smell and taste and body pain.

According to officials, this is to ensure that the patient isn’t left unattended till the arrival of the results of RTPCR. Thirty thousand such medical kits are already ready for providing to patients.

The Chennai Corporation Commissioner told IANS, “This method is to ensure that positive patients are not venturing out and spreading the disease even unknowingly.”

The city has reported over 7,000 fresh Covid cases on Tuesday.

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