No shortage of oxygen supply at Covid facilities – Health Minister

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Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony has assured that there is no shortage of oxygen supply at any of the facilities treating Covid-19 patients.

“So far, we haven’t had an issue with oxygen because we have been working with the oxygen company to make sure that we have adequate supplies of oxygen. We’ve had several meetings between ourselves and the company and we have taken some additional measures of increasing the capacity, the oxygen capacity at the Ocean View facility.”

He also noted that there are “several other backup plans” in cases of emergency and as such the Health Ministry has anticipated no oxygen shortage.

“Previously we were utilising a 1000-pound cylinders of oxygen and we’ve had several of them. We have now put in a bulk tank that was specially designed and brought into the country to cater for such needs so that tank right now we replenish it every 24 hours and so that is providing us right now with the types of oxygen supply that we need,” Dr. Anthony said.

Minister Anthony said a consultant from PAHO/WHO, who was in the country, had assisted the health ministry in analysing oxygen needs in all the regional hospitals across the country.

“Based on those recommendations, those that were falling short in terms of how many oxygen tanks and so they should have, we have been able to start those corrective measures so, we have been very proactive in how we’ve been addressing oxygen and making sure that we have adequate supplies,” the health minister said.

Meanwhile, the minister expressed concern about the continuous rise in active cases and hospitalisations. Some 139 persons are currently hospitalised with 31 patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

“We have about 3,092 active cases across the country and in every region, we’ve seen an increase in cases, over the last 24 hours, we have had 135 new cases, that’s after doing 1,158 tests,” the minister said.

Minister Anthony reiterated that the public plays an important part in preventing the spread of the deadly Coronavirus. He said persons need to be cautious by wearing their masks, keep social distancing, get vaccinated and sanitise frequently. [Extracted and Modified from DPI]