Pre-order vaccines, ensure availability of drugs to fight Covid-19: Doctors write to Telangana CM

K V Kurmanath Hyderabad | Updated on April 24, 2021

K Chandrashekar Rao, CM, Telangana

‘Strict price caps and vigilance to ensure vaccine lots are not diverted’

A group of senior doctors in Telangana have asked the Telangana Government to pre-order sufficient stocks of vaccine as the scope of the vaccination programme is getting expanded on May 1.

They wrote a letter to Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao, asking him to put in place a well-knit policy and operational mechanism to improve preparedness in tackling the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We need to procure vaccines from the manufacturers well on time. Place orders at the earliest to meet our demands as the new guidelines decentralised the vaccination drive,” they said.

“There should be strict price caps and vigilance to ensure vaccine lots are not diverted to third party players,” they said.

Be transparent

They wanted the government to make the health bulletins more transparent and ensure sufficient supply of key drugs such as Remdesivir and Tocilizumab injections.

“The Government must intervene to make such drugs available to hospitals to avoid price gouging by various players,” they said.

The signatories included Lakshmi Lavanya Alapati, Gokhale AGK; Manjula Anagani; Sai Ravi Shanker, M.S.S. Mukharjee, Vijaya Bhaskar Reddy, and Sai Lakshmi Dayana.

“Also, an active dashboard of bed availability of isolation beds with oxygen facility and ICU beds in the public and private hospitals would help patients save time in taking admission,” they said.

They wanted the Government to set up an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for hospitals to sort out operational issues quickly.

Besides offering care through telemedicine to those who are home isolation to reduce pressure on healthcare infrastructure, there is a need to creating new infrastructure to increase the bed availability.

Understanding mutants

The doctors asked the Government to push for more genomic sequencing of RT-PCR samples to understand the new variants of the Covid-19 virus.

“It will help to understand rediscovering newer second generation vaccines to prevent a third wave. Investing money in research of the variants and clinical trials to understand the vaccine efficacy and development of new vaccines to overcome the future changing variants,” they pointed out.

Green channel

“There is a need for government intervention and regulatory mechanism to ensure unobstructed movement of raw material, packing material, finished products and manpower related to manufacturing and distribution of drugs and medical devices,” they said.

Some other key suggestions
  • 1) Encourage people to wear good masks. Discourage manufacture, sale and use of sub-optimal masks. Provide masks to the poor.
  • 2) Bring in an Ordinance to take control over all the Oxygen plants and channelise the distribution through one window.
  • 3) Start a hospital preparedness checklist and the Covid-19 surge spreadsheet to estimate the demand and get ready to tackle it.
  • 4) Expedite RT-PCR testing and analysis of samples quickly by increasing the availability of test analyzers and lab technicians. RT-PCR and rapid antigen testing centers should work 24 hours a day.
  • 5) Announce incentives, compensation and ensure adequate rest to the Covid care doctors, nurses and paramedic teams.
  • 6) Rein in hospitals charging very high fee. Have a cap on the price.
  • 7) Despite working very hard, some private hospitals are being attacked. They need protection.

Published on April 24, 2021

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