As Mucormycosis cases surge in Gujarat, the demand for Amphotericin-B injection that is used to treat the disease is on the rise too. This has led to many taking to black marketing of the injections taking advantage of the desperation of patients and their relatives who are in need.
The Ahmedabad Crime Branch arrested four men for black marketing of the injections for mucormycosis. The four used to get the injections and sell them at exorbitant rates. The cops recovered eight injections of Amphotericin-B from them. They used to sell each of them for Rs10,000.
Cops are still investigating as to how the four managed to get the injections and who sold it to them for how much.
The Crime Branch had got a tip-off that one Pragnesh Patel and Smit Raval were through their contacts selling Amphotericin-B injections to relatives of mucormycosis patients. They were selling it at a higher price.
The Crime Branch officials posed as potential customers and nabbed the two and also arrested Vishisht Patel and Nirav Panchal. The eight injections recovered from them cost Rs314 but were sold for Rs10,000 each.
Mucormycosis cases in Gujarat
Eight major government hospitals in Gujarat have over 1100 Mucormycosis cases even as shortage of the life-saving drug Amphotericin-B (in liposomal form) continues. Also known as black fungus, the number of surgeries related to the disease has also gone up.
Earlier, the state had told the high court that it has placed orders for 1.24 lakh vilas of Amphotericin B in both liposomal and lyophilised form at a cost of Rs15 crore. The lyophilised form of the medicine is known to cause renal toxicity and hence is not suitable for those with co-morbid conditions.
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