Health Ministry advises states to treat oxygen as critical commodity, warns against ‘misplaced fear’
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Health Ministry advises states to treat oxygen as critical commodity, warns against ‘misplaced fear’


Union Home Ministry on Friday (April 30) advised states to treat the available oxygen as a critical commodity and undertake oxygen consumption audits in all hospitals including private hospitals. It also asked them to go for intensive and local containment measures in districts with a high number of COVID-19 cases to contain the pandemic. 
The ministry also warned against the ‘misplaced bravery’ reflecting in statements and stressed on following COVID-19 appropriate behaviour and treatment guidelines, highlighting that ‘we may be tired but the virus is not’.
Seeking everyone’s support to manage the situation, Joint Secretary in the Union Health Ministry Lav Agarwal said a ‘misplaced fear’ is also being observed among people and urged them not to stock oxygen cylinders or life-saving drugs at home.
“Then we see misplaced fear that ‘I came in contact with a case, I am infected and will surely die’; ‘I need Remdesivir just in case I get the infection’, ‘Let’s get an oxygen cylinder in advance at home’,” Agarwal said.
He underlined that fear and panic only aggravates and complicates the agony. “Let’s not get an oxygen cylinder in advance at home,” the Joint Secretary in the Health Ministry said.
Addressing a press conference, he said from the start of the pandemic, the government had identified oxygen-supported beds as major clinical interventions.
“We have requested the states to treat the available oxygen as a critical commodity and also to ensure a rational use of oxygen,” Agarwal said.
He said the states have been advised to prohibit an abnormal use of oxygen by monitoring the non-closure of the cylinder valve when it is not being used.
He said it has also been reiterated that the states build COVID-19 suspect wards for patients whose test results are yet to be out.


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