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Industrial antidotes key to toxic poisoning

Tuesday, January 01, 2019
By A Staff Reporter

Stocking of industrial antidotes is a critical aspect of hospital care as patients that come in with poisoning or toxicity of industrial affluent requires immediate medical aid. It is in the ‘Golden Hour’ i.e. the critical 60 minutes after a poisoning that the patient should be provided the prompt medical and surgical treatment that will prevent the death of the patient.

However, various surveys and reports have shown that hospitals and pharmacies do not have adequate stocks of antidotes to treat cases of poisoning and require the help of distributors to provide the medicines needed. One such company, GNH India is a catalyst that ensures that life-saving medicines reach the appropriate places within a short period of time; sometimes in a matter of a few hours.

The company has seen a rapid increase in demand for industrial antidotes like methylene blue, Calcium EDTA, and pralidoxime to patients in locations like the states of Maharashtra, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan.

“The rise in the demand for these antidotes has a direct correlation with the substantive increase in industrialisation and urbanisation. While most states have put a heavy foot on accelerating these development projects; little to nothing is being done with regard to the human cost”, said Dr. Piyush Gupta, Director of GNH India Pharmaceuticals Ltd.

The shortcomings are two-fold, one lies in the insufficient safety measures at the project site and the other in the lack of proactively stocking medicines that are life-saving in hospitals.

About 48,000 workers in India lose their lives due to occupational accidents, of which the construction sector contributes 24.20 per cent of the fatalities, says a recent report based on a study conducted by the British Safety Council last year.

“The number of orders received by us from all over India reveals the state of shortage of antidotes for industrial poisoning, in our country and our hospitals. Despite having international standards in place by the WHO – ILO in addition to a policy, a system, and a programme on occupational safety and health, occupational hazards have been a neglected area in our country.

Various hindrances like administrative difficulties, lack of infrastructure, and paucity and ineffectiveness of the guidelines pose a challenge in making the antidotes available for the patients in need,” said Dr. Gupta.

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