The Union Health Ministry has issued an advisory to all central government hospitals to ensure that adequate supply of “all essential life-saving items” is maintained and cited the alleged stoppage of oxygen supply in the Gorakhpur hospital where over 60 children died in five days.
The UP government has not yet accepted on record the claim that the deaths were caused by the stoppage of oxygen supply at Gorakhpur’s B R D Medical College Hospital.
The letter, written by the ministry’s joint secretary Gayatri Mishra, said: “I would like to invite your attention to the news report of unfortunate death of several children in B.R.D medical collage, Gorakhpur, allegedly due to stoppage of oxygen supply by vendor.” It added: “In order to avoid such incident in your hospital/institute, it is necessary that adequate supplies of all the essential life saving items are ensured in the hospital.”
The letter has been addressed only to hospitals and institutions run by the Centre, according to officials.
“We have issued DO [Demi-official] letters to our central hospitals and institutions across the country,” Mishra told The Indian Express. When asked if the letters had been sent to state governments, Mishra said the ministry has not so far written to states, but added: “It can be done.”
The letter, accessed by The Indian Express, asks the hospital head to take “proactive measures”. It further asks the authorities to intimate steps taken to the Union Health Ministry.