NEW DELHI (AP) – India’s coronavirus cases rose again on Friday, prompting the military to reopen its hospitals in a desperate attempt to contain the massive humanitarian crisis caused by acute bed shortages of drugs, medicine and oxygen.
With 386,452 new cases, India now reports more than 18.7 million cases since the outbreak, second only to the United States. The health ministry said on Friday that 3,498 people had died in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 208,330. Experts believe that both indicators are low, but how unclear it is.
People excited to find hospital beds with a hustle and bustle flood social media և message attachments with heartbreaking requests for oxygen, medicine և intensive care units.
Indian Army Chief Mn Naravan met with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday to discuss the crisis.
Naravana said patients could seek help at their nearest army hospitals. The government said in a statement that the troops were assisting in the introduction of imported oxygen tanks and vehicles where specialized skills were needed.
India has set a world daily record for more than a week with an average of almost 350,000 infections. Daily deaths have almost tripled in the last three weeks, reflecting the intensity of the latest wave.
A school teachers’ organization in Uttar Pradesh’s most populous state says more than 550 members have died after contracting COVID-19 to help hold this month’s local elections, the Times of India reported.
Experts blame the rise on new, more contagious versions of the virus – public rallies such as political rallies and religious events that are allowed to continue. Millions of people voted in the West Bengal state election on Thursday, paying little attention to social distance.
In the southern state of Karnataka, the Minister of Revenue R. Ashoka said that almost 2000 coronavirus patients under home care had turned off their phones and could not return them. He said police were trying to track them down because they could seek hospitalization on their own.
In the central Madhya Pradesh state, three villages in the Balaghat district have raised money to turn buildings into COVID-19 care centers. They acquired oxygen concentrates and began to receive patients. State doctors visit institutions twice a day.
India plans to step up the fluctuating drive for vaccines by allowing all adults over the age of 18 to get their shots from Saturday. According to the Ministry of Health, it has so far delivered a dose of 150 million vaccines.
Since January, almost 10% of Indians have received one dose, but only about 1.5% have received both, even though India is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of vaccines.
Minister of Health Harash Vardan expressed hope that the aid sent by more than 40 countries will increase the shortage of medical supplies. The United States shipped more than $ 100 million worth of items, including 1,000 oxygen cylinders, 15 million N95 masks, and 1 million rapid diagnostic tests.
On Friday, Japan Aponia said it would send 300 air conditioners and 300 oxygen concentrates at the request of the Indian government. “Japan Aponia is next to our friend և partner India,” the Foreign Ministry said.
France, Germany, Ireland, Australia have also pledged aid, and Russia has sent two planes carrying oxygen-producing equipment. The Indian Air Force also ventilated oxygen tanks from Singapore, Dubai and Bangkok.