COVID second wave: Shortage of Remdesivir creates booming black marketers

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  19 April 2021 9:45 AM GMT
COVID second wave: Shortage of Remdesivir creates booming black marketers

Hyderabad: The sudden shortage of Remdesivir drug in Telangana has triggered panic among the people. While black marketing gangs and crooks are making the most of this shortage, people are shelling out huge amounts for the drug that is used in COVID-19 treatment, .

While the manufacturer has priced the drug at Rs. 5,000, it is now being sold at Rs. 40,000 in the black market. Lack of strict surveillance from the Drugs Control Administration and other government agencies has turned out to be a blessing in disguise for these gangs.

Shockingly, persons associated with the drug manufacturers are hand in glove with these gangs. A salesperson of a pharma company and a medical store owner arrested at Vanasthalipuram on Sunday is one example. The police seized 10 injections of Covifor from them. Many such people are operating without any hurdles. Further, private hospitals treating COVID patients are insisting on this drug and creating panic among the people.

Despite the health ministry and government agencies stating that Remdesivir is not the only option to treat COVID-19, private hospitals are forcing people to buy the drug. It was also found that expecting the sudden rise in cases, private hospitals have already hoarded these drugs in large quantities. However, they are telling their patients that the drug is out of stock and they had to procure it through private sources. Under this guise, they are also collecting huge amounts from the patients. They are also supplying drugs to small hospitals that are on good terms with them.

It was also found that people from neighboring states are looking to Hyderabad for Remdesivir injections. Since the cases had gone up in those states much before Telangana, stocks were diverted to those states. Especially corporate hospitals with multiple branches in several states have procured the drug from their branches in Telangana and transported them to their branches in other states, causing a shortage in Telangana.

On Sunday, TS health minister Eatala Rajender said the shortage would be addressed soon and asked people not to panic. The government has already directed private hospitals to stop prescribing Remdesivir injection unless it is urgent.

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