Govt takes steps to make available drug to fight black fungus. Image Source: IANS News

New Delhi, May 12 : The government has said it is taking steps to ramp up availability of Amphotericin B - to fight Mucormycosis, a black fungus infection in Covid patients.

The sudden increase in demand has been observed in some states for Amphotericin B which is being actively prescribed by the physicians to patients suffering from Mucormycosis, a post Covid complication, said the Chemical and Fertilizer Ministry.

Doctors have raised an alarm about Mucormycosis, also known as black fungus, which can turn dangerous if left untreated, amid reports of re-emergence of the rare deadly fungal infection among Covid-19 patients across hospitals in Delhi, Pune and Ahmedabad.

The fungal infection is caused by a group of molds called mucormycetes. These molds live throughout the environment. Mucormycosis mainly affects people who have health problems or take medicines that lower the body's ability to fight germs and sickness.

The Government of India is therefore engaging with the manufacturers to ramp up production of the drug. The supply situation is expected to improve with extra imports of this drug and increase in its production domestically.

After reviewing the stock position with the manufacturers/importers, and the demand pattern of Amphotericin B the Department of Pharma, has on May 11, 2021, allocated this drug amongst the States/UTs based on expected supply that will be available from May 10 to May 31, 2021, the ministry said.

States have been requested to put in place a mechanism for equitable distribution of supplies amongst Government and Private hospitals and health care agencies. States have also been requested to publicise in the State the 'Point of Contact' for Private and Government hospitals to obtain the drug from this allocation.

Further, States have been requested that judicious use may be made of the stock that has been already supplied as well as stock that has been allocated. The arrangements for supply will be monitored by National Pharmaceuticals Pricing Authority (NPPA).

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