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So far, only BMC has placed an order for 15,000 vials and received the first batch of 5,900. However, this is far from sufficient. According to sources, Bangladeshi companies and some Indian manufacturers process nearly 50 prescriptions per day in the Mumbai metropolitan area alone (MMR).
While according to the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI), pharmaceutical companies can only sell Remdesivir to hospitals, sources say.
Last month, Health Minister Rajesh Tope announced that the state government would buy 10,000 vials of Remdesivir from a Bangladeshi company.
On Tuesday, DCGI ordered its officials to monitor the sale and distribution of Remdesivir to prevent black marketing. In a letter to law enforcement agencies, the Comptroller General of Drugs of India, VG Somani, said his office had received “complaints about black marketing and overpricing[of Remdesivir by some people. unscrupulous ”and that“ the measures taken in this matter could be reported to this office. as soon as possible.”
Renowned pulmonologist Dr Jalil Parkar, who recovered from the Covid-19 infection and returned to work, said it had been a month since he heard of government intervention to make in the face of the acute shortage of Remdesivir. “But even now, patients are struggling to get the drug. Ten of my patients are in urgent need of Remdesivir. But I am helpless, ”he said, adding that as an attending physician it is my duty to organize the medication that a patient needs. “It’s painful to give a prescription to the patient’s family and ask them to pick it up. Where will they get it if I can’t? He asked.
Suraj Samat, who represents Bangladeshi supplier Eskayef Pharmaceuticals in India, said he was inundated with requests for Remdesivir every day. “We follow all DCGI import standards and rules. A patient is entitled to 11 vials according to the standards, ”Samat said.
Meanwhile, Cipla on Wednesday launched its generic version of Remdesivir, Cipremi. The company aims to supply more than 80,000 vials in the first month. Hetero Labs Ltd’s version is called Covifor, costs Rs 5,400 per vial, while Mylan’s drug is called Desrem.
Additional City Commissioner (Health) Suresh Kakani said he has asked all doctors to enter each vial of Remdesivir used into Google Sheets so that we can track its usage. “All appointed IAS officers in BMC hospitals have also been ordered to monitor this. If the need arises, we will do an audit, ”he said.
A senior state government official, who declined to be identified, said the first batch of 100 vials arrived on Wednesday and an order for 5,000 more will be placed soon.
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