Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers D V Sadananda Gowda today said that allocation of 16.5 lakh vials of remdesivir has been made to all states for the period between 3rd and 9th May.
“Since 21st April, a total allocation of 34.5 lakh vials has been made so far. Allocation to states is a dynamic process and efforts will be made to further enhance supply in the coming weeks,” he added.
Speaking during a review meeting on the availability of drugs for COVID treatment and other essential drugs, Gowda stressed on the need to continuously monitor availability of other essential medicines and to check instances of black marketing and hoarding.
Dr V G Somani, Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI), also present at the meeting, informed that a survey is already being undertaken to ascertain the availability of various medicines in the market. Preliminary findings suggest that at present, there is adequate availability of medicines in the market and Department of Pharma, National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) and Central Drugs Standard Organization (CDSCO) will continue to closely monitor their availability.
Regarding black marketing and hoarding, he conveyed that the State Drug Controllers (SDC)s have been instructed to make teams at the state level for field inspections. Strict action is being taken against hoarding and black-marketing of drugs. A number of preventive and enforcement actions have been taken by DCGI/SDCs to stop hoarding/black marketing/overcharging of COVID-management drugs like remdesivir, tocilizumab, favipiravir, etc.
By 1st May, 2021, as many as 78 actions have been taken all over India in coordination with SDCs, local police, FDA, etc. for hoarding, overcharging, black marketing, and arrests were made/cases were registered. Seizures of drugs, vehicles, empty vials (meant probably for making spurious drugs) and cash were made. In one case in Chandigarh, remdesivir vials to the tune of 3,000 units were recovered.