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COVID-19: HUL to provide 4,000 oxygen concentrators to India

Under its "Mission HO2PE", HUL will send 4,000 concentrators to the worst affected cities which includes Delhi, Lucknow, Bangalore etc.

May 11, 2021 / 01:38 PM IST
Oxygen concentrator (Representational image)

Oxygen concentrator (Representational image)

 
 
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FMCG major Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) on Tuesday said it will provide 4,000 oxygen concentrators to India to address the acute shortage of medical oxygen as the country grapples with a deadly second wave of the pandemic.

Under its "Mission HO2PE", HUL will send 4,000 concentrators to the worst affected cities which includes Delhi, Lucknow, Bangalore etc, the FMCG major said in a statement.

"HUL is partnering with KVN Foundation and Portea, India’s largest home healthcare company, to make the O2 concentrators available to needy patients promptly and efficiently," it said.

Portea will have access to 3,000 concentrators, which will be provided free of charge to patients, while the remaining will be donated by HUL to hospitals in nearly 20 locations across India.

HUL's partnership with KVN Foundation and Portea will provide oxygen for COVID-19 patients directly in their homes, reducing the pressure on healthcare infrastructure which is already under duress.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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"Patients can avail of this service by calling the 'Mission HO2PE' helpline number and request for oxygen concentrators," it added.

Apart from O2 concentrators, HUL will also be providing ventilators and other medical equipment for hospitals, including in rural areas.

Besides this partnership, HUL is also facilitating and covering the cost for vaccination of its outer core of around 300,000 people including those who work for suppliers, distributors as well as Shakti Ammas in rural areas.

According to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Tuesday, the single day rise in new coronavirus infections in India fell to 3.29 lakh taking the total tally of COVID-19 cases to 2,29,92,517.

A total of 3,29,942 infections were reported in a span of 24 hours, while the death toll climbed to 2,49,992 with 3,876 fresh fatalities, the latest data said.
PTI
first published: May 11, 2021 01:37 pm

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