New Delhi: With three positive cases of novel coronavirus in India and hundreds of suspected people kept under isolation, the Central government has estimated the requirement for at least 50,000 Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kit in stock for doctors and medical staff who are treating these patients.
PPE consists of a mask, eye shield, shoe cover, gown and gloves which doctors wear while treating patients. According to the officials at the Union Health Ministry,
As of now, adequate stocks of logistics including PPE is available. State governments have also been advised on the necessary precaution to be taken up on the issue. Presently there is no such crisis–like shortage of PPE. But, as a part of preventive measure storing adequate quantity of PPE in advance is always a better way to deal with the crisis, if the need arises. We have estimated the requirement of about 50,000 PPE kit for the doctors.
There are only a few companies in India which deal with the manufacturing, exporting and importing of PPE. He said,
We are in talks with three companies who import and manufacture PPE from abroad. As of now, they have approximately 20,000 PPE kits in hand and they are ready them to give us. One company has given 11,500 PPE kits while the others have given 7500 and 300 PPE kits respectively. Similarly, we are in touch with three companies who manufacture these PPE in the country itself. But these companies give supplies to the Army. So, we have sent their samples for quality test, which technical wing of the ministry of textiles is dealing with. Once, it gets approved, we will give orders for manufacturing of PPE in bulk.
It may be noted that China is witnessing a massive outbreak of novel coronavirus. This deadly disease has infected more than 37,000 people and has claimed over 800 lives so far. The situation has led to an extreme shortage of PPE for doctors in China to treat patients suffering from coronavirus.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared it as “global health emergency” with hundreds of cases being reported across the world.