Pharma companies not supplying mandated Remdesivir quota to Maharashtra: Tope

MUMBAI: Maharashtra Health Minister Rajesh Tope on Friday alleged that most of the pharmaceutical companies are not supplying the mandated quantity of Remdesivir vials to the state.

Remdesivir, an anti-viral drug, is used in the treatment of coronavirus patients.

“The Union government has fixed the quota of Remdesivir vials to every state. However, most of the pharmaceutical companies are not supplying the vials as per the quantity allocated by the Centre,” Tope told reporters.

Of the total number of Remdesivir vials that the Indian government has received as part of the US aid, Maharashtra managed to get 52,000 vials, he added.

“But it is the duty of the (Centre’s) Department of Pharmaceuticals to ensure that Maharashtra gets the supply of Remdesivir as mandated by the Centre,” he said.

According to him, except Hetero Labs, no other pharmaceutical company is supplying Remdesivir as per the fixed quota.

Tope had earlier said that the state’s daily requirement of Remdesivir is around 60,000 vials.

When asked about the expression of interest invited by the Maharashtra government for importing medical equipment, he said, “Purchase order for three lakh Remdesivir vials is given after completing the necessary documentation and approvals. The proposal is now with the Drugs Controller General of India.”

On Thursday, Tope had claimed that the Union government’s Department of Pharmaceuticals was slow in granting clearance to essential medical items imported by the state government.

According to the minister, a task force of doctors has been set up to give final approval for oxygen concentrators.

“The state would be buying over 40,000 oxygen concentrators and the task force has called for a demo of the machine before finalising the order,” he said.