Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called for the optimum utilisation of the entire national capacity, in both the public and private sectors, to ramp up the production of anti-coronavirus vaccines amid an alarming spike in COVID-19 cases in the country.

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Taking stock of the situation of the pandemic in the country in a high-level meeting with officials, the Prime Minister reviewed the status of supply of medicines such as Remdevisir and called for fast-tracking installation of approved medical oxygen plants, PTI reported. 

A number of states, particularly Delhi and Maharashtra, are facing an acute shortage of oxygen supply, ICU beds, vaccines and other medical supplies with the country’s daily count of COVID-19 cases crossing the 2 lakh-mark. 

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Addressing the concerns, PM Modi said all necessary measures must be taken to ramp up availability of hospital beds for COVID-19 patients, while adding that local administrations need to be proactive and sensitive about people’s concerns. 

“India defeated COVID-19 last year, we can do it again with same principles but faster speed and coordination. Close coordination with states must be ensured in handling COVID-19 pandemic,” the Prime Minister said. 

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PM Modi said “there is no substitute to testing, tracking and treatment” and that ther is a “need to utilise full potential of India’s pharma industry to meet rising demand of various medicines”. 

He also reviewed the status of availability and supply of ventilators in the country, calling for a real-time monitoring system. The Prime Minister also said that the use of Remdevisir and other medicines must be in accordance with approved medical guidelines, adding that their misuse and black marketing must be “strictly curbed”.