December 2, 2021

Supreme Court establishes National Task Force to review, recommend oxygen need and distribution across India

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The Supreme Court on Saturday has established a 12 member task force to assure that the medical
oxygen is delivered across the country in a streamlined manner. A bench led by Justice DY
Chandrachud created the task force to review and recommend the need and distribution of oxygen
across India. The court has deployed the task force will also cater to a public health response on the
grounds of a scientific approach over the issues of essential drugs, manpower and medical care for the
rural areas.
The task force comprises of 10 doctors and the convenor of the task force will be the cabinet of the
secretary to the Centre. In the 12 member committee created by the Supreme Court also comprises of
the secretary to the health. The 12-member panel constitutes of –

  • Dr Bhabatosh Biwas, the ex-vice chancellor, West Bengal University of Health Sciences,
    Kolkata
  • Dr Devender Singh Rana, Chairperson, Board of Management at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital
  • Dr Devi Prasad Shetty, Chairperson and Executive Director at Narayana Healthcare,
    Bengaluru
  • Dr Gagandeep Kang, Professor and Lecturer at Christian Medical College, Vellore in Tamil
    Nadu
  • Dr JV Peter, Director at Christian Medical College, Vellore in Tamil Nadu
  • Dr Naresh Trehan, Chairperson and Managing Director at Medanta Hospital and Heart
    Institute, Gurugram.
  • Dr Rahul Pandit, Director of Critical Care Medicine and ICU Department, Fortis Hospital, at
    Mulund and Kalyan in Mumbai, Maharashtra
  • Dr Saumitra Rawat, Head and Chairman of the Department of Surgical Gastroenterology and
    Liver Transplant at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Delhi
  • Dr Shiv Kumar Sarin, Senior Professor and Head of Department of Hepatology along with
    Director of Institute of Liver and Biliary Science (ILBS), Delhi
  • Dr Zarir F Udwadia, Consultant Chest Physician at Hinduja Hospital, Breach Candy Hospital
    along with Parsee General Hospital in Mumbai, Maharashtra
  • Secretary for the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India (ex-officio
    officer)
  • The Convenor of National Task Force, who will also be a member, will take charge as the
    Cabinet Secretary to the Union Government to Task Force.
    The Supreme Court has also given the permit for the audit of medical oxygen to assess the supply and
    efficacy of oxygen distribution as per the orders issued by the government of National Capital
    Territory of Delhi (GNCTD). The audit group for Delhi will include Dr Randeep Guleria, Dr Sandeep
    Budhiraja along with one IAS officer from Centre and Delhi government.
    After the onset of the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, the hospitals in the country are facing
    acute shortage of the oxygen supply, which has led to the deaths of several patients affected with
    Covid-19.
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