Amid the shortage of ventilators at hospitals treating COVID patients, the Uttar Pradesh Government had provided 42 ventilators to government hospitals in Kanpur. But, of these, 28 have been found to be defective, forcing the hospitals to return them.
Ventilators are needed to treat patients with severe symptoms of COVID and, in some cases, even those with mild symptoms.
Of the 42 ventilators manufactured by a private company, the state government had given 34 to Lala Lajpatrai Hospital, the only hospital in the city to treat COVID patients who are critically ill. The remaining eight were provided to Kanshiram Memorial Trauma Centre, where those with mild symptoms are admitted.
But the Lala Lajpatrai Hospital was forced to return 20 ventilators and the Kanshiram Memorial Trauma Centre had to give back eight because they didn’t function properly.
There were problems with the ventilators, said chief medical superintendent Dr Dinesh Sachan.
Although the company’s engineers tried to rectify the problems, they couldn’t fix them, health authorities said.
“The company engineers worked for several days to fix them. They (the ventilators) are being returned now and a proposal would be sent for the new ones. We have made the engineers’ report available to the government,” Dr Richa Giri, superintendent in chief at the Lala Lajpati Rai Hospital, said, according to Hindustan Times.
Dr Giri said when the 34 ventilators were delivered, the hospital couldn’t operate any of them. The companies engineers managed to fix 14, she said.
The main problem of the ventilators was with control over the supply of oxygen to patients. The glitches in the software and the valves made the supply of oxygen inconsistent. Excess supply of oxygen could affect the lungs, health authorities said. They said the ventilators did not even have the humidifier kit essential to operate them.