New Delhi: The Punjab and Haryana High Court has asked the Centre whether import of refurbished ventilators can be permitted, suggesting reconsideration of the ban on import of these ventilators.
The bench of Justices Rajan Gupta and Karamjit Singh remarked that the induction of such ventilators “may help some serious patients.”
The bench had been informed during the previous hearing that the import of used important equipment is prohibited. This included ventilators. The ban had been imposed for the following reasons:
– Ensuring Quality Control: Used critical care equipment can be sold as remanufactured without actually being evaluated in terms of quality, safety and effectiveness. In addition, there may be issues related to repair, maintenance, availability.
– The used equipment will degrade very fast and this will lead to a huge electric waste in the country. To ensure the environmentally sound management of e-waste is already a huge concern, which may end if imports of critical care equipment used are allowed.
The bench had sought an independent opinion from an expert to ascertain whether used ventilators imported from another country would be dangerous for use in hospitals in India.
The Bench asked for a copy of the report that had been supplied to the ASG to enable it to receive instructions, specifically to “save the lives of serious patients while keeping this matter in mind.”
The bench further asked the refurbishing company to submit a certificate of disinfection, their effectiveness and ensured maintenance in respect of 32 ventilators imported by the petitioner-firm to the director of the Government of Punjab and Department of Medical Education and Research.
– India Legal Bureau