Punjab CM raises alarm over vaccine, oxygen shortage

Prime News, National (Chandigarh), April 20:- Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Monday urged the Centre to send immediate supplies of vaccines and also give quick approval for two new oxygen plants in the state amid concerns over depleting stocks of both.

On the availability of vaccines, Chief Secretary Vini Mahajan told the Chief Minister that the situation was critical, with only three days of stocks left, but the Central government has assured that more would be coming soon.

Medical Education Minister O.P. Soni cited a shortage of oxygen supply in Amritsar hospital, while the Chief Secretary said though Indian Oil Ltd (OIL) was providing the state with supplies, the situation was a matter of concern.

A close watch was being kept on the demand-supply situation at both government and private hospitals, she said.

A committee has been formed by the state government, under the Principal Secretary Industries, to monitor the situation and coordinate with the centre in this regard, said Mahajan.

Health Secretary Hussan Lal said three plants had been operationalised since the last surge, and two plants at Medical Colleges in Amritsar and Patiala were awaiting the Centre’s approval. While there was a shortage currently, supplies were being diverted from one district to another to meet the requirements.

The meeting was informed that vaccination appeared to be having a positive effect in the police department, with only one vaccinated personnel testing positive in the past 24 hours and a total of only 397 positive cases among those who have been immunised.

The Chief Minister directed all departments to make all efforts to maximise vaccination among the eligible population. He also urged large industries to take responsibility for getting their employees vaccinated. (MR, Inputs: Agencies).

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