Oxygen cylinder
India's oxygen crisis will take time to resolve itself, and countries and organisations are sending supplies to ensure short-term needs are met. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Dubai: Dubai-based Jacky’s Electronics is taking orders for oxygen concentrators to be shipped directly to India from the company’s base in Hong Kong. As of today, more than 1,000 of these units have been shipped out to India.

This way, an expat Indian based in the UAE can place the order online and have the equipment shipped to the address of their choice in India. Deliveries are expected to be made within a seven-day timeframe, despite the many restrictions in place on international flights into India.

India’s hospitals have been running short of oxygen supplies, further exacerbating the COVID-19 crisis. Several countries are leading the effort to ensure sufficient supplies of oxygen are there for India, while the Indian government too has speeded up access of the bare essential to the country’s hospitals.

But there are still reports of hospitals across the country suffering shortages, with COVID-19 cases at a daily 300,000 plus. Several organisations in the UAE have been tapping all possible flight options to make whatever oxygen supplies are possible.

How the concentrator works
Concentrators collect oxygen direct from the air, concentrate it and then deliver it to the person in need of it. This removed the need to replace or refill, which is what oxygen tanks require

Delivery in 7 days

According to a senior official at Jacky’s, the direct-to-India option is for those wanting to ensure their loved ones back home have access to oxygen if need be. More so as it could be a while before normalcy returns to the stretched healthcare system.

"The feeling of helplessness is something that frustrates many people when they see the dire situation in India,” said Ashish Panjabi, Chief Operating Officer at Jacky’s. “We managed to work out a solution together with our office in Hong Kong for the Concentrators, where we can secure orders and ship them from Hong Kong to India on a door-to-door delivery basis.

“With most airlines given priority to oxygen-supply related shipments and the Indian government allowing exceptional imports, we're hoping to expedite the dispatch at this stage." (Orders can also be placed by Filipino expatriates for deliveries in the Philippines.)

Price for these concentrators is around $999 inclusive of shipping charges. “Pricing is volatile, but we're trying to secure quantities,” said Panjabi. The first shipment left the Hong Kong base on Wednesday (May 5).

“The amount of cargo and number of flights is imbalanced - we're hoping logistics will only improve going forward,” he added. “We've also had many people in the UAE ordering who want to donate or gift.”

Stock - Oxygen concentrator (Jacky's)
Shipments are good to go... To date, more than 1,000 concentraor units have been sent to India by the retailer from Hong Kong. Image Credit: Jacky's Eelctronics