New Delhi : Indian Air Force has swung into action by carrying out sorties from various parts of the country to airlift oxygen containers, cylinders, essential medicines, equipment required for setting up and sustaining COVID hospitals and facilities in the fight against fresh surge in COVID-19 cases. The IAF Transport aircraft and helicopters have been pressed into service for carrying out these tasks. These include transport aircraft C-17, C-130J, IL-76, An-32 and Avro. Chinook and Mi-17 helicopters are on standby. Tasks undertaken include airlift of doctors and nursing staff from Kochi, Mumbai, Vizag and Bangalore for various hospitals at Delhi.
The C-17 and IL-76 aircraft of IAF have started airlifting big empty oxygen tankers from their place of use to the filling stations across the country to speed up the distribution of much needed oxygen. In addition to this, the C-17 and IL-76 have transported large quantity of load comprising bio safety cabinets and autoclave machines for setting up of an additional COVID test facility at Leh. The IAF transport and helicopter assets are on standby to be deployed at short notice.
It may be recalled that in the initial days of COVID-19 outbreak in 2020, the IAF ran several sorties to deliver medicines, medical and other essential supplies required to combat the coronavirus pandemic as well as brought back stranded Indian nationals from abroad.
AFMS to import oxygen generation plants from Germany to tide over current surge in COVID-19 cases
Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS) has decided to import oxygen generation plants and containers from Germany, amid shortage of oxygen in the hospitals during the second wave of Covid-19 across the country. Twenty-three mobile oxygen generation plants are being airlifted from Germany that will be deployed in AFMS hospitals catering to the COVID patients.
Each plant has a capacity to produce 40 litres of oxygen per minute and 2,400 litres an hour. At this rate, it can cater to 20-25 patients round the clock. The advantage of these plants is that they are easily portable. These oxygen generating plants are expected to arrive in India within a week.
In another important decision, Ministry of Defence is giving extension to Short Service Commissioned Doctors in AFMS till December 31, 2021 to tide over the current surge in medical services. This will augment the strength of AFMS by 238 more doctors.