Today’s Infectious Disease News (4/26/21)

India’s COVID-19 Surge Plunges its Healthcare System into Crisis

India’s COVID-19 surge has overwhelmed India’s healthcare systems, giving many people no choice but to buy medications and oxygen on the black market. Black market drugs have become increasingly expensive and are sometimes fraudulent and dangerous. The crisis has affected the entire healthcare system as essential resources such as lab tests, CT scans and beds have been maxed out and delayed for days. The strain on the country’s health systems has left some people with life-threatening conditions to die without any medical care. While some families have purchased private medical care, most people cannot afford this option. One drug in short supply is tocilizumab, an arthritis treatment that some studies have shown to help people with severe COVID-19 cases avoid a ventilator. The shortage of tocilizumab “shows that there was no planning” and that the government failed to anticipate the wave and plan for it”, say public health expert Anant Bhan. “People have been left to their own fate.”

Full Story: BBC