The Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the Centre to frame a policy on the distribution of Liposomal Amphotericin B, a drug used in the treatment of black fungus. It added that younger people and those with better chances of survival should be prioritised, instead of older ones who have lived a full life.
A Division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh asked the Centre to frame the policy and file a status report in this regard and listed the matter for Friday. The court asked the Centre to take a policy decision on the manner the medicine Amphotericin B drug, used for treating black fungus, should be made available to patients, making it clear that any decision taken in this regard should be with inputs from medical professionals.
The court also suggested patients should be prioritised — who have a better chance to survive so at least some lives can be saved.
The High Court said that those who have a better chance of survival, who are younger and hold the promise of the future have to be prioritised over the older generation who have lived their lives.
The Court, however, clarified by saying that, “We are not for a moment discounting the emotional support that the older generation provides families, particularly Indian families that are so closely bonded.”
The Court said that difficult choices have to be made and should be made at this stage.
“If we have to choose, the young will have to be chosen. They are the future. 80-year olds are not going to carry this country forward. They have lived their lives,” the Court said.
“We may also observe that there may be a category of persons who are serving the nation at high positions and whose safety and security may have to be kept in mind due to the pivotal role that they play; the policy may provide for such cases,” it added.
The Court noted the number of cases of black fungus is increasing day-by-day and a large number of fatalities are taking place. Despite best efforts, the country is suffering from a shortage of the drug in the country.
It also noted that the requirement of Liposomal Amphotericin B is far in excess.
The Court was hearing a batch of pleas on COVID-19 and black fungus management in the national capital.