Amidst COVID-19 second wave, Paytm buys home medical equipment for team members, their family
Indian companies are putting their best foot forward to help their employees weather the second wave of the coronavirus safely, especially at a time when there is a critical shortage of oxygen cylinders and ventilator support for patients affected with COVID-19.
CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma on Tuesday tweeted, saying the company had purchased home medical equipment like oxygen concentrators for its employees, their families, and communities in a bid to assuage any difficulties they may face in the coming days vis-a-vis cylinders and ventilators.
While many on Twitter criticised the move, accusing the fintech head of hoarding, skewing supply, and not thinking about patients suffering from severe respiratory illness, others lauded the efforts the startup has taken to support its staff at a critical juncture.
In recent times, startups and corporates have announced several COVID-19-related employee benefits, including offering to pay for vaccinations, holding vaccination camps on their premises, adding coverage for COVID-19 in their group insurance plans, providing extra time off, and connecting employees with mental health services, among others.
Many have gone back to the work from home format, despite following all COVID-19 protocols with limited staffing, and are actively persuading people to stay home.
The COVID-19 situation in India has been getting grim with worse-than-ever pressure on the healthcare system. Earlier in the day, India reported the world's largest single-day spike in positive cases, surpassing the US with over 3.14 lakh new cases.
Total positive cases are now at 15.93 million in the country, and experts have predicted the second wave will likely peak between May 11 and May 15.
Several countries have cut international flights from India or mandated quarantine for a fixed number of days to contain the virus and its many mutations from spreading into their countries. The US, UK, Hong Kong, and Singapore have tightened travel rules so far.