China donates 170,000 PPE kits to India to help fight Covid-19
China donated 170,000 personal protection equipment (PPE) kits to India on Monday to help the neighbouring country fight the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) outbreak, the health ministry said.
Domestic supply of an additional 20,000 PPE will begin soon. Altogether, these 190,000 kits will be distributed to hospitals and health facilities. This will add to the 387,000 PPE already available in the country.
The development comes amid a debate over whether India has enough PPE kits to arm its frontline health care workers who are working round the clock to contain the spread of the fast-spreading infection.
In addition, 200,000 domestically produced N95 masks are being sent to various hospitals, the health ministry statement said, adding that about 1.6 million such masks are already available.
A large part of the fresh supplies will be sent to states with comparatively higher number of cases such as Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Delhi, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Rajasthan.
“The commencement of foreign supplies marks a major milestone in our efforts to procure personal protection equipment for the battle against Covid-19,” the ministry said.
It added that an order for 8 million complete PPE kits was placed before a Singapore company. Also, negotiations are in final stages with a Chinese platform for placing an order of 6 million complete PPE kits, which will also include N95 masks.