As reported by Moneylife,
a growing number of corporates are helping the government and citizens fight COVID-19 and provide facilities and supply materials during the second wave of the pandemic. While some are setting up healthcare facilities, others are busy in the procurement of essential materials like oxygen and medicines.
ITC Ltd, a diversified conglomerate with businesses spanning fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), hotels, paperboards and packaging, agriculture business and information technology (IT), is setting up a 200-bed medical facility in Kolkata with support from Medica Superspecialty Hospitals for COVID-19 treatment. The Kishore Bharati Stadium, provided by the West Bengal government, was converted into a makeshift hospital in record 72 hours, the company says.
In addition, ITC is also airlifting a large number of oxygen concentrators. "To serve the national priority and government’s effort in easing the bottleneck of medical oxygen supply to hospitals, ITC is airfreighting 24 cryogenic ISO containers from Asian countries in collaboration with Linde India Ltd," it says.
ITC's paper unit in Bhadrachalam has already commenced supply of oxygen to neighbouring areas.
State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender will be setting up makeshift hospitals with intensive care unit (ICU) facilities for COVID-19 patients in some of the worst affected states. SBI has earmarked Rs30 crore for this and is talking with some non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and hospital managements.
SBI chairman Dinesh Kumar Khara told PTI, the bank intends to put in place 1,000 beds with 50 ICU facilities in the states that are the worst affected. "We have put in place an action plan. We have earmarked Rs70 crore plus out of which we are giving Rs21 crore to 17 circles for COVID-19 related initiatives," he says.
After Maharashtra, the Mukesh Ambani owned Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), through the Reliance Foundation, is setting up a 1,000-bed capacity Covid hospital at Jamnagar in Gujarat that will also have oxygen supply facility. The hospital will provide relief to people living in Jamnagar, Khambhalia, Dwarka, Porbandar and other regions of Saurashtra.
In a statement, Nita M Ambani, founder and chairperson of Reliance Foundation says, "As India fights the second wave of COVID-19, we are committed to helping in every way we can. Additional healthcare facilities are one of the most critical needs of the hour. Reliance Foundation is setting up a 1000-bedded hospital with oxygen for COVID-19 patients in Jamnagar, Gujarat. The first phase of 400 beds will be ready within a week and the other 600 beds in another week. The hospital will provide quality care free of cost."
RIL is already providing free of cost COVID-19 care in Mumbai where 875 COVID-19 beds are managed by the Reliance Foundation Hospital. Between Jamnagar and Mumbai, the company will set up and manage 1,875 beds for COVID-19 care, RIL says.
Hyundai Motor India Foundation (HMIF), the philanthropic arm of Hyundai Motor India, is offering infrastructural assistance worth Rs20 crore to the states most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, which include Haryana, Delhi, Maharashtra, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu.
To provide meaningful respite across the most impacted states and cities, Hyundai says it will deploy its resources for setting up oxygen generating plants in hospitals, to aid critical patients and help hospitals become self-sufficient in oxygen supply.
Hyundai Motor India will also install medicare facilities and provide support staff to various hospitals and cater to their operational cost for the next three months and further too, if needed.
Under its #OxygenForIndia initiative, digital financial services platform Paytm is set to airlift 21,000 oxygen concentrators (OCs), which is expected to reach India during the first week of May.
"These devices would be immediately sent to government hospitals, COVID-19 care facilities, private hospitals, nursing homes as well as resident welfare associations. The company has already raised Rs5 crore from citizens for the initiative and has matched rupee for rupee making it Rs10 crore," Paytm says.
Retail giant Walmart says it will donate up to 20 oxygen-generating plants and 20 cryogenic containers for oxygen storage and transportation to India, as well as more than 3,000 oxygen concentrators and 500 oxygen cylinders for delivering oxygen therapy to patients at home or in hospital.