Updated: May 14, 2021 10:28:21 pm
WITH BLACK marketing of remdesivir injections soaring, the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) has appointed flying squads to conduct checks and stop the malpractice of the life-saving drug.
“The PCMC has given permission to private hospitals to treat Covid-19 patients. It has been observed that remdesivir injections in some hospitals are being misused. Patients are not getting the injections on time. To keep control on the use of the drug and ensure its proper utilisation, we have appointed flying squads,” said PCMC Commissioner Rajesh Patil in a directive.
The PCMC chief said, “The number of patients, who are hospitalised, is on the higher side. We are also giving permission to new hospitals to treat Covid-19 patients. However, we have found several shortcomings in the functioning of these hospitals. Unnecessary use of remdesivir has also increased. This is resulting in shortage of the drug.”
Joint City Engineer Shrikant Savane has been appointed as the coordinating officer. PCMC junior engineer and deputy engineers will be part of the squads.
Savane said the flying squads will start conducting inspections at civic and private hospitals from Friday. “We will start scanning the hospitals over remdesivir use. All officers have been briefed as to how to verify the use of remdesivir,” he added.
In all, around 130 Covid hospitals are functioning in Pimpri-Chinchwad. Savane said the district collectorate provides remdesivir stock to hospitals.
“The hospitals are supposed to strictly use the injections on the in-house patients. They are not supposed to provide it to outside patients. In some cases, staffers of hospitals have been caught black marketing the drug to outside patients. Our squads have to been asked to verify the stock given to hospital with the actual use on patients. The collectorate also provides the copy of its order regarding issue of remdesivir to each hospital to the civic health department. We will cross-check the stock of remdesivir with hospitals and its use for patients,” he said.
The PCMC itself had to face embarrassment recently after one of the employees from the civic-run Auto Cluster Covid hospital was caught black marketing remdesivir injections. He was arrested by the police. This incident hastened scrapping of the civic body’s contract with a private party, which ran the Auto Cluster Covid hospital.
PCMC health officials said some hospitals force families of patients to purchase remdesivir from outside. “This is a wrong practice. The collectorate has already issued an order in this connection, stipulating that it is the responsibility of the hospital concerned to ensure availability of remdesivir. The hospital should not make families run around. If any hospital is found doing this, families should bring it to the notice of the civic or district officials.”
The PCMC has decided to purchase 10,000 remdesivir injections for patients at its five hospitals. The civic standing committee has given an approval for the purchase of the drug at Rs 3 crore.
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