BALTIMORE (WJZ) — More than 8,000 miles away, India is in the grips of a deadly second wave – and Johns Hopkins University is rushing to help out.
The university created the Johns Hopkins India Institute, a task force focused on partnering with organizations on the ground to solicit donations such as personal protective equipment kits, lab supplies, oxygen supplies and testing kits.
“Within India, there are many, many families – millions of families suffering tremendously – so we’re thinking of the short-term and long-term need. Everything from food support to mental health support and where to go to get these things,” said Dr. Amita Gupta, a professor of medicine and international health at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Teachers and students – each with a personal connection to India – are working to make this all possible.
India is facing a catastrophic surge in Covid cases, reporting more than 412,000 cases on Thursday, a new single-day record.
Hospitals are swamped, sending some people away.
Desperate families are turning to oxygen clinics on the street, while those in need of ventilators wait in ambulances outside overwhelmed hospitals.
Supplies are also running dangerously low.
“This has been a surge unlike any other,” Gupta said.
The country tops more than 20 million cases.
Right now, only 2% of India’s population is vaccinated, and their goal is to provide them with not only supplies, but knowledge on how to deal with the crisis so India can start to heal, Gupta said.
“The ramifications of what’s happening now is going to have far-reaching consequences beyond this year,” Gupta said.