The ventilator models went through rigorous screening, technical demonstration and clinical validation process

The central government on Thursday said Made in India ventilators are technically sound and readily supplied to states refuting certain media reports claiming that government supplied ventilators had glitches.

There have been some media reports suggesting that Government of India supplied ventilators (supported by PM CARES) to GGS Medical College and Hospital, Faridkot, Punjab are lying unused as a result of technical glitches which have not been resolved due to poor after-sales support by the manufacturers.

“These reports seem to be unfounded, not having the full information on the matter,” the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare said in a statement.

The center has said that there was a limited supply of ventilators early in the pandemic and that is when the local manufacturers were encouraged to produce “Make in India" Ventilators. This was done to address the huge projected demand of the country and orders placed on them.

“The ventilator models went through rigorous screening, technical demonstration and clinical validation process in the very limited time available for the same, through domain knowledge experts, and after their approval, these were put into supplies,” the statement said.
It further noted that there are a few States which have received the ventilators but are yet to get these installed in their hospitals.

Union Health Secretary has written to seven such States on 11th April which still have more than 50 ventilators lying uninstalled with them for the last 4-5 months. They have been requested to get the installation expedited so that the ventilators can be put to optimal use.

With reference to the recent media report regarding 71 of 80 AGVA make Ventilators being non-functional or faulty at the GGS Medical College and Hospital, Faridkot, Punjab, the center clarified that 88 Ventilators have been supplied by Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and five by AGVA. After successful installation and commissioning, these Ventilators were provided with Final Acceptance Certificate by the hospital authorities.

BEL has informed that bulk of the ventilators at GGS Medical College Hospital (GGSMCH), Faridkot are not faulty, as are being reported in a section of the media.

“It was observed that there are issues / problems with the infrastructure in GGSMCH including non-availability of required pressure in the central oxygen gas pipelines,” it said.

Further, the consumables like flow sensors, bacteria filters and HME filters are not being changed by the hospital authorities as per the prescribed norms, or the ventilators are being used without these important consumable items. Maintenance of correct gas pressures (difference between air pressure and oxygen pressure cannot be more than 10 PSI) and use of proper consumables are essential requirements, without which performance of CV200 ventilators is not guaranteed.

Furthermore, BEL engineers visited GGSMCH again on 12th May and made five ventilators functional only by replacing a few consumables and demonstrated their optimum performance to the GGSMCH authorities, thereby, further making it evident that when operated properly, the ventilators will provide reliable performance.

In addition to the instructions given in the user manual, detailed instructions and guidelines have also been issued to all the ventilator users regarding infrastructure requirements, proper usage and maintenance of the CV200 ventilators.
However, these are not being followed by many hospitals / medical colleges in Punjab. They have been, instead, raising the issue of ventilators being non-functional without any basis.

It is clarified that BEL will continue to provide all the technical support required by the State in meeting the ventilator requirement during this pandemic situation.

In addition, the Union Health Ministry has written to the States and UTs on 9th May 2021 informing them once again of the Helpline numbers of the Ventilator manufacturers, which are also available on the ventilators in the form of stickers.

Also, information has again been provided of state wise Whatsapp groups created with the concerned nodal officers of the States/UTs, representatives of the User Hospitals and technical teams of the manufacturers in order to address any technical issues in real time. Dedicated email IDs of these manufacturers have also been shared with the States/UTs.