At least 22 COVID-19 patients died after their oxygen supply was suspended for half an hour following leakage in the tank at the Zakir Husain Hospital in Nashik, Maharashtra, on Wednesday (April 21).
According to reports quoting official sources, there were in all 150 patients on oxygen support in this 130-bed government hospital. Other reports said that the number of patients in the hospital may have been higher.
Eleven of those died were male and the rest 11 were female. All those 22 who died were on ventilators.
The hospital authorities were in the process of removing the patients to other health-centres following the leakage in oxygen tank being reportedly supplied by a private vendor.
Incidentally, this leakage had taken place when there is acute shortage of oxygen all over the country, especially in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Delhi etc.
This is not the first case of oxygen-related tragedy to strike India in the last few weeks. Only a few days back several people died in Madhya Pradesh in two such cases of acute shortage of oxygen.
Nashik is the one of the worst hit districts of Maharashtra, on an average reporting 4,000 positive cases daily. Besides this tragedy, the district witnessed 48 deaths in the last 24 hours.
The mishap in Nashik has further compounded the problem of oxygen shortage in the city.
Meanwhile, Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray has ordered a high-level inquiry into the incident and announced payment of Rs. 5 lakh as compensation to the bereaved families.