India COVID-19: People Die in front of Hospitals and at Their Homes Lacking Oxygen and Medical Care

World | April 26, 2021, Monday // 13:57|  views

For several days in a row, India has set an unwelcome world record for new coronavirus infections. On Monday, India recorded a new global high for daily coronavirus cases for a fifth straight day at 352, 991.

In capital Delhi, where hospitals are overwhelmed and people are desperate hundreds die every day.

As hospitals in Delhi and many other cities run out of beds, people have been forced to find ways to get treatment for sick patients at home.

Many have turned to the black market, where prices of essential medicines, oxygen cylinders and other stuff have skyrocketed and questionable drugs are now proliferating.

Unfortunately most of India's population cannot afford to do this. There are already several reports of people dying at the doorsteps of hospitals because they couldn't afford to buy essential drugs and oxygen on the black market.

According to Bbc investigation, when asked several oxygen cylinder suppliers asked for at least 10 times more than the normal price.

The situation is particularly dire in Delhi where there are no ICU beds left. Families of those who can afford it are hiring nurses and consulting doctors remotely to keep their loved ones breathing.

Labs are overrun and it's taking up to three days for test results to come back. This is making it harder for treating doctors to assess the progression of the disease. CT scans are also used by doctors to asses the condition of the patient but it's taking days to get an appointment.

Doctors say that these delays are putting many patients at risk. RT-PCR tests are also taking days. I know several sick patients who found a bed but couldn't get admitted as they didn't have a positive Covid report.

Desperate people are willing to buy even questionable drugs. And some have been cheated as well. People are constantly sharing phone numbers of suppliers who can provide anything from oxygen to medicines. But not all of these numbers are verified.

Desperation is driving people to trust anything in the hour of need and that seems to be fuelling the black market. Several state governments have promised to crack down on black marketing of remdesivir and some arrests have also been made. But the black market seems unfazed./BBC


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Tags: India, Delhi, Coronavirus


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