As many 256 oxygen concentrators have arrived at the City’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) from Singapore amid an acute shortage of medical oxygen in the wake of huge spike in COVID-19 cases in the country, the private airport operator said on Wednesday.
The oxygen concentrators weighing approximately 5.5 tonnes, landed in two tranches with each consisting of 128 concentrators in the last two days, it said.
The medical device concentrates oxygen from ambient air and is particularly helpful for patients who are isolating at home as well as for meeting the demands of hospitals running low on oxygen.
As India receives global support to combat the second wave of COVID-19, the first shipment of oxygen concentrators landed in Mumbai at 9.52 pm on Tuesday followed by another one, which arrived at 10.10 am on Wednesday, CSMIA said.
Frequently Asked Questions
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.
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.
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.
The offloading of these shipments was given topmost priority and the entire process was completed in a span of 15 minutes, the airport operator said.
The recent spike in cases has led to an increase in demand for oxygen across the country.Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic here.