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Pune: Relatives of Covid-19 patients gherao chemists after failing to get Remdesivir

The Chemists Association of Pune district officials said that they did not have a single vial on Saturday morning.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
April 10, 2021 11:04:19 am
Relatives of Covid-infected patients wait in queue to buy Remdesivir at Poona Hospital Medical Store on Wednesday. (Express Photo: Pavan Khengre)

On Saturday morning, relatives of Covid-19 patients gheraoed the chemists at Poona Hospital Medical Store after they failed to procure the Remdesivir injections despite procuring tokens in advance. For the last four days, there has been a shortage of the Remdesivir in the city which is seeing the highest ever coronavirus infections for last few days and record number of hospitalizations.

While FDA officials had earlier told The Indian Express that the supply had been stabilised, on Saturday, there was a queue of people lining up outside the pharmacy.

A person whose relative was at a hospital at Sinhagad road required the injection, and despite collecting tokens on Friday from the Chemists Association after being assured that the injection would be given on Saturday, failed to get the vial.

The Chemists Association of Pune district officials said that they did not have a single vial on Saturday morning. To ensure that relatives did not have to run around for Remdesivir injections, they had set up 20 distribution centres in the city. Food and Drug Administration along with the Chemists Association of Pune district had jointly contributed to this exercise, Anil Belkar, Secretary of the Association said.

“We had set up counters and distributed more than 800 vials till yesterday. We have totally run out of stock on Saturday morning and will be going to the FDA office to inquire,” Rohit Karpe, treasurer at the Chemists Association of Pune district told The Indian Express. FDA officials had said that they were expecting 11,000 vials.

Remdesivir is one of the most sought after experimental drugs for the treatment of Covid-19 patients, and part of country’s treatment protocol. For the last two to three days, there has been a huge demand for the drug. According to the Chemists Association of Pune district, there was a five fold rise in the demand. Anil Belkar said that previously there was a demand for 2,000-3,000 vials, but now it has shot up to 20,000 vials.

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