New Delhi: Since April 1, the Centre has distributed more than 2.02 crore N95 masks and over 1.18 crore PPE kits among the states, Union Territories and central institutions for free, the Union health ministry said on Friday (July 3).

In addition, 11,300 "Make in India" ventilators have so far been dispatched to various states, Union Territories and central institutions, of which 6,154 have already been delivered to various hospitals, it said.

"The Central government is also ensuring their installation/commissioning. This will help to bridge the massive gap in availability of ventilators in COVID ICU facilities," the ministry said in a statement.

The health ministry is also supplying 1.02 lakh oxygen cylinders to the states and Union territories, of which 72,293 have been delivered to strengthen the oxygen-beds there.

Also, more than 6.12 crore HCQ tablets have been given to the states and Union territories.

The Union government, along with the states and Union territories, has been relentlessly working for the prevention, containment and management of COVID-19, the statement said.

The Central role of the government has been in strengthening the health infrastructure to fight the pandemic, it added.

"Along with augmenting COVID-19 facilities, Centre has been providing medical supplies free of cost to the state and UT governments to supplement their efforts," the ministry said.

The statement underlined that most of the products supplied by the Centre were not being manufactured in the country in the beginning and there was a global demand due to the pandemic, resulting in a "scarce availability in the foreign markets".

However, with the combined efforts of the ministries of health, textiles, pharmaceuticals, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and others, the domestic industry has been encouraged to manufacture and supply essential medical equipment such as personal protective equipment (PPE) kits, N95 masks, ventilators during this period.

"With the result, resolve for 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' and 'Make in India' has been strengthened and most of the supplies made by GOI are domestically manufactured," the ministry said.