New Delhi: Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya on Friday said that India sent medicines to 150 countries during the COVID crisis without increasing the price and compromising on the quality of the medicines.
Minister was speaking at the inauguration of the International Symposium on Health Technology Assessment in Delhi on Friday.
“During the COVID crisis, India sent medicines to 150 countries without increasing price and compromising on the quality,” Union Health Minister said.
India offered support to more than 150 affected countries in the form of vaccines, medical equipment and medicines during the pandemic, Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha Harivansh said in a Keynote address at the 26th Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Commonwealth (CSPOC) in Canberra, Australia in January.
The Deputy Chairman had said that India facilitated the evacuation of stranded foreign nationals from different parts of India to around 123 countries.
Mandaviya said that India fulfils 65 per cent of the world’s vaccine requirement. “Today, if there is any country in the world which is providing affordable medicines, then it’s India,” he informed. Harivansh further added that India took an exclusive initiative “Vaccine Maitri” to supply COVID-19 Made-in-India vaccines to various countries across the world.
Under this initiative, as of the first week of December 2022, India has supplied more than 282 million vaccine doses of COVID-19 to 101 countries and two UN entities.
“Since the outbreak of the COVID pandemic in India, we followed a ‘whole of Government’ and ‘whole of society approach’. We took several measures for containing the spread of the virus, addressing major gaps in the availability of life-saving healthcare facilities, shoring up livelihoods and restoring normalcy in the areas such as education and employment,” he had added.
On the steps taken by the Indian government during the COVID-19 pandemic, he had said, “As regards enacting relevant legislations, the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 was amended by Parliament to provide for adequate safety and protection of healthcare personnel handling patients and the epidemic.
The Essential Commodities Act, of 1955 was amended to ensure that there are no shortages of foodgrains and also to keep the commodity prices under check during a pandemic. These changes helped to ensure food security to vulnerable sections of the country through the Public Distribution System.”