Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) plays a very important role in fighting the COVID-19 situation. These PPE kits protect frontline health workers and doctors who are attending the infected people from the infections.
There are other things like ventilators and testing kits etc. that are also needed, undoubtedly. There is a ramping up of ventilators facilities as well, but the bitter fact is that there is a very meagre percentage of survival once anyone reaches that stage. As far as testing kits are concerned, there is a global scarcity for this. Nevertheless, India is using all means at its disposal to bring speed and scale to the testing process.
This clears the picture that the primary preventive tool in the fight is PPEs. Here India is showing its true might.
PPE Production – A Scene of Satisfaction
- Production capacity of coveralls required by medical personnel treating COVID-19 cases in the country has been ramped up to more than 1 lakh per day
- With nearly 50% of overall production, Bengaluru has become a major hub for PPE production
- Tirupur, Chennai and Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu, Ahmedabad and Vadodara in Gujarat, Phagwara and Ludhiana in Punjab, Kusumnagar and Bhiwandi in Maharashtra, Dungarpur in Rajasthan, Kolkata, Delhi, Noida and Gurugram have also emerged as PPE production hubs
- Four laboratories have been approved to test the quality and give approval
What this Means for India?
Apart from the obvious fact that India has been able to protect its frontline Corona warriors by ensuring sufficient supply of PPEs, it also tells about India’s potential in specialised skills that can be leveraged at global scale, even after this crisis gets over.
Unlike preparing simple masks for public consumption, the production of PPEs needs a sophisticated skill-set which is backed by the supply of fine quality fabrics. India mastering this skill within a very quick time when the crisis has struck us speaks volume about India’s chances to rise after the pandemic phase.
Back in January 2020, the World Health Organisation publicised the specifications and international standards to be maintained in the production of PPEs. Very few international companies had the capacity of production and as the days passed, they said that they can’t meet the global demand surge of PPEs. The source countries had also placed export restrictions by that time.
India swung into action, and the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare finalised the technical requirement on March 2, 2020, based on the indigenous availability of materials and the technical requirement for a sophisticated PPE.
The specifications were published on March 5, 2020 inviting manufacturers having adequate capability to participate in the procurement process.
As they say, rest is history.