The PM CARES Fund has accorded sanction for procurement of 1.50 lakh units of Oxycare system developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation, DRDO at a cost of over Rs 322 crore. Oxycare is a SpO2-based Oxygen Supply System which regulates the oxygen being administered to patients based on the sensed SpO2 levels. Under this sanction, one lakh manual and 50 thousand automatic Oxycare systems along with non-rebreather masks are being procured.
The Oxycare system delivers supplemental oxygen based on the SpO2 levels and prevents the person from sinking into a state of hypoxia which can be fatal. This system was developed by Defence Bio-Engineering & ElectroMedical Laboratory, DEBEL, Bengaluru of DRDO for soldiers posted at extreme high-altitude areas. The system is indigenously developed for operation in field conditions and is robust. It can be effectively used to treat COVID-19 patients.
Two variants of the system have been configured. The basic version consists of a 10-litre oxygen cylinder, a pressure regulator- cum-flow controller, a humidifier and a nasal cannula. The oxygen flow is regulated manually based on the SpO2 readings. In the second configuration, the oxygen cylinder is equipped with electronic controls which automatically regulates the oxygen flow through a low-pressure regulator and a SpO2 probe.