In a significant development, India has now achieved an almost unrealistic goal of producing 2.06 lakh PPE kits daily within two months after the coronavirus outbreak. The highest single-day production of PPE kits, around 2.06 lakh kits, was recorded on May 2. However, on average, domestic production is about 1.5 lakh per day.
A PPE kit consists of a mask, eye shield, shoe cover, gown and gloves, which doctors and healthcare workers wear during the treatment of COVID-19 patients. Speaking to ANI, a senior Health Ministry official said that that there was no domestic manufacturing of PPE kit in the country and almost all of them were imported.
"It is very comforting to us that our in-house PPE kit production is increasing fast. On May 2, the country recorded maximum production of protective gears of about 2.06 lakh manufactured in a single day," a senior Health Ministry official told ANI."Earlier, there was no domestic manufacturing of PPE kit in the country and almost all of them were imported. Within a short span of time, India has been able to increase the daily production of PPE kits to about 1.5 lakh," he added.
The government has identified at least 110 domestic manufacturers of PPE kits in the country. However, only 52 companies are manufacturing PPE kits right now.
"In January, there were only 2.75 lakh PPE kits (imported ones) available in the country. As of today, we have about 15.96 lakh PPE kits in the centre-state buffer stock," added the official.
The Health Ministry has also issued additional guidelines for the rational use of PPE (Personal Protection Equipment) by health workers and other personnel, in non-COVID hospitals and non-COVID treatment areas in COVID hospitals. The additional guidelines provide the use of PPE according to the risk profile of the area in each type of hospital setting. A full complement of PPE is required in high-risk areas, triple-layer medical mask, and examination glove in low-risk areas, the Ministry said.
"Also, it is important that each and every contact of positive patients is traced. Conducting surveillance for SARI (Severe Acute Respiratory Illness) and ILI (Influenza-Like Illness) symptoms in facilities in containment zones and otherwise, yields very valuable data and guides further action," Lav Aggarwal added.
(With inputs from ANI)