Sri Lanka sends Sos for rescue and emergency medical supplies
NEW DELHI : Sri Lanka has approached the Indian Drug Manufacturers Association (IDMA) for supplies of emergency and life-saving drugs as hospitals run out of stock due to the economic crisis that has engulfed the country .
“We have received communication from Sri Lankan counterparts asking for medical supplies. There are very few companies doing business with Sri Lanka, and only those who have the license can supply the material there,” said Daara Patel, Secretary General of IDMA. “They gave us the list of medicines which we distributed to all our members. As our members respond to us, we will see how we can best help Sri Lanka. I think some of them would definitely come forward to support Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka is seeking emergency aid to get lifesaving medicines amid its worst economic crisis. The island nation, which imports 85% of its medicine needs, has run out of dollars to pay for imports, putting its healthcare system on the brink of collapse. The Sri Lankan government has also called on other countries to donate lifesaving drugs.
“I wish to inform you that the government of Sri Lanka, through its diplomatic missions abroad, has issued an international appeal for the donation of emergency and life-saving medicines which are not manufactured in Sri Lanka and which cannot be procured through India’s line of credit,” said Niluka Kadurugamuwa, deputy high commissioner and spokesperson for the Sri Lankan high commission in New Delhi, in an email response to a question. .
An April 8 communication from the island nation’s Ministry of Pharmaceutical Production, Supply and Regulation to its Ministry of Foreign Affairs said: “There is a considerable amount of life-saving medical supplies such as orthopedic implants , anti-cancer drugs, reagents and consumables used in the blood. banks, HLA (human leukocyte antigen) tests, HIV-AIDS test reagents and laboratory reagents imported from USA, Europe and Australia. Due to the current foreign exchange reserve crisis, it has been extremely difficult to maintain the supply chain of the aforementioned critically important medical supplies imported from Europe.”
While giving a list of 273 such items, the ministry said: ‘We would be extremely grateful if you could assist the Department of State in coordinating with foreign missions and any other interested donors to maintain medical supplies that are not are not manufactured in Sri Lanka and could not be imported using the Indian line of credit.”
Sri Lanka is India’s 18th largest pharmaceutical trade partner. India exported pharmaceuticals worth over $274.4 million to Sri Lanka in FY21, marking a 25% growth over the previous year. However, exports fell to $234.56 million the following year.
Previously, the State Pharmaceuticals Corp. of Sri Lanka said it had asked the Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council of India to “sensitize” its members on the need to ensure the medical supply of the country affected by the crisis. Given the financial crisis, Indian manufacturers are worried. on payment for their exports to Sri Lanka.
In a separate communication dated April 11 to donors reviewed by Mint, the Department of State for Pharmaceutical Production, Supply and Regulation said, “The Department of State is utilizing maximum production capacity local and also started using the Indian line of credit for maximum effect to purchase medical supplies for Sri Lanka.”
The April 11 letter said donations could be sent in dollars or in goods.