FDA permits industrial manufacturers to produce medical oxygen

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Published on Apr 11, 2020 11:18 PM IST
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ByRupsa Chakraborty, Mumbai

The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) has permitted manufacturers of industrial oxygen to produce medical oxygen for Covid-19 patients, anticipating a rise in the number of cases in the state.

As the number of coronavirus cases in the state has increased to over 1,500, FDA is trying to boost oxygen production for critical patients. They have already issued a circular allowing industrial oxygen manufacturers to approach the apex drug regulatory body for approval to produce medical oxygen.

“Once a manufacturer approaches us, within 24 hours our officer will inspect the factory. We will give approval if the producer has adequate safety mechanism in place,” said Vikas Biyani, joint commissioner (drugs), FDA.

Covid-19 often leads to breathing complications leading to patients needing oxygen support, according to doctors. Currently, Maharashtra has 82 licensed medical oxygen manufacturers.

Medical oxygen maintains sufficient oxygen level needed in our blood, while industrial oxygen is used in applications such as welding.

“As industrial oxygen manufacturers don’t come under our umbrella, we don’t have the exact data on the number of producers. But we hope to soon be able to double up oxygen production in the state,” added Biyani.

In India, around 6,500 metric tonnes (MT) of oxygen is produced every year of which 5,500 MT is used for industrial use and the remaining 1,000 MT for medical purposes.

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Sunday, November 28, 2021