Telangana has lodged a protest with the Centre for taking control of the distribution of Remdesivir injections for Covid patients across the country. Health Minister Eatala Rajender said though Telangana had placed an order for four lakh Remdesivir vials for 10 days (April 21 to 30), the Centre allotted it only 21,551 vials.
He told the media that the Centre's action of taking control of the drug has shocked the state. Rajender said that after taking control of vaccines and oxygen, the Centre also took control of Remdesivir.
The Minister said he spoke to Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan to convey the state's reservations over the meagre allocation. The central Minister, however, gave no assurance.
"This is very unfortunate. We don't know on what basis they made the allocation," he said.
Rajender said the Centre can't make the allocation to Telangana on the basis of the cases in the state.
He pointed out that 60 to 70 per cent patients undergoing treatment in hospitals in Hyderabad come from other states.
"Patients from Maharashtra, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh are undergoing treatment in Hyderabad," he said.
The Minister questioned the higher allocation of Remdesivir to states like Gujarat and remarked that the Centre should keep politics aside during the pandemic.
Rajender said a letter would be sent to the Centre to allocate the entire Remdesivir produced in Telangana to the state.
He also found fault with the way Telangana was allocated oxygen. He pointed out that the allocation for the state was made from manufacturing plants in Odisha, which are 1,300 km away from the state.
The Health Minister said if the Centre does not make the necessary changes in the allotment, it will be responsible for any shortage of oxygen in the state.
He said though the Centre allocated 30 tonnes of oxygen from Tamil Nadu, the latter was not ready to supply even one tonne.
Rajender said though allocation to Telangana is 384 tonnes per day, the state is getting only 260-270 tonnes.
He said the Centre was also being biased in the supply of vaccines.
He added that though the state has the capacity to vaccinate 10 lakh people every day, it is not getting adequate supplies.
The Minister criticised the Centre for not planning properly for adequate production of vaccine doses.
He claimed that compared to other states Telangana was dealing effectively with the surge in Covid cases.
Rajender added that there was no death in the state due to lack of oxygen.
"There is also no shortage of Remdesivir or hospital beds in the state," he said.