UK sends 3 oxygen plants to India aboard world’s largest cargo plane
The flight is expected to reach Delhi on Sunday, after whichaid will be dispatched to hospitals
As India continues to reel under the unrelenting second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, countries across the world are providing crucial medical aid and assistance to support the nation’s efforts to combat the surging infections. On Friday, the British government sent three 18-tonne oxygen concentrators and 1,000 ventilators as part of the UK’s support to India in the ongoing fight against COVID-19.
As per a statement by the British government, the life-saving medical supplies were onboard Antonov 124, the world’s largest cargo plane. Dispatched from Belfast in Northern Ireland, the cargo plane is expected to land in Delhi on Sunday at 0800 IST, following which the Indian Red Cross will facilitate the transfer of supplies to hospitals across the country.
“This life-saving equipment will support the country’s hospitals as they care for vulnerable COVID patients,” UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said.
These supplies are funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO). Reportedly, each of the three oxygen generation units has thecapacity to produce 500 litres of oxygen per minute, which is enough for at least 50 people to use at one point in time.
A statement by the Union Health Ministry on Saturday underlined that India has been receiving international aid and donations of essential medical supplies and equipment from various countries across the world since April 27, 2021, to support its efforts to curtail the COVID-19 surge.
On Friday, India received 2,060 oxygen concentrators, 30,000 Remdesivir vials, 467 ventilators and three oxygen generation plants from a group of countries, including the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), Poland, Switzerland, Israel, and the Netherlands.
“Cumulatively, 6,608 Oxygen Concentrators, 3,856 Oxygen Cylinders, 14 Oxygen Generation Plants, 4330 ventilators/Bi PAP and about three lakh Remdesivir vials have been delivered/dispatched, from April 27, 2021 to May7, 2021,” the ministry added in the statement.
The government has expressed appreciation towards the global community for its support in the time of crisis. The Centre noted that the global community has reflected solidarity and goodwill towards India by extending a helping hand in the collective fight against COVID-19. The Ministry noted a systematic mechanism has been designed by the government to ensure effective allocation and prompt distribution and delivery of all medical supplies received through international aid.
The second COVID-19 wave has hard-hit India’s healthcare infrastructure with hospitals running out of beds, oxygen supplies, ventilators and medicines. On Friday, the country reported over 4.14 lakh new cases, with more than 3,900 fatalities.