Bali gets hundreds of oxygen concentrators following supply crisis

Patients have started using oxygen concentrators across Java island and in Bali. Photo: Health Ministry
Patients have started using oxygen concentrators across Java island and in Bali. Photo: Health Ministry

There’s a collective sigh of relief in Bali after the province received hundreds of oxygen concentrators from the central government, following an oxygen crisis officials confirmed only a few days ago. 

Earlier today, Bali Deputy Governor Tjokorda Oka Artha Ardana Sukawati told reporters that oxygen supply is gradually improving for the island. 

“As of today, [oxygen supply] is better. And the most important thing is that we got help, in the form of 264 oxygen concentrators,” the official, popularly known as Cok Ace, said. 

The concentrators have been delivered to hospitals with the most urgent need for the machine, he added, pointing to Sanglah General Hospital and Bali Mandara Hospital. 

Last week, Bali Health Agency Chief Ketut Suarjaya sounded the alarm for the region’s oxygen supply. 

“We’ve had an oxygen shortage since July 14, and it’s getting critical by the day because of a surge in new cases,” Suarjaya said on Friday, as quoted by state news agency Antara. ”There’s an oxygen crisis in Bali.” 

Suarjaya’s statement on Friday came only a couple of days after he reassured that there wasn’t a shortage of oxygen supply, merely delays in deliveries, following reports that private hospitals in Bali have begun to turn away patients due to unreliable oxygen supply. 

On Thursday, patients in Bali reportedly needed over 113 tons of oxygen, but hospitals had only around 40 tons readily available. The official said that high demands in Java have impacted the supply of oxygen for Bali, especially with daily new infections continuing to rise.

The province recorded its highest daily caseload yet last Friday, with 1,407 cases. Today, it reported another 1,078 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total number of people in treatment to over 10,000 patients.

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