India’s premiere medical association calls for complete lockdown

Hospital beds, oxygen and other basic medical supplies are scarce across the country.
3:08 | 05/09/21

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Transcript for India’s premiere medical association calls for complete lockdown
And now to the crisis in India. The country's premier medical association is calling for a complete lockdown of the country, and blasting the Indian government for its lethargic and inappropriate actions. Hospital beds, oxygen, and other basic medical supplies are scarce. Volunteers stepping in to help the sick in the streets. Funeral pyres burning throughout the night. At least 4,000 people are dying every day. Maggie Rulli on the desperate situation on the ground in new Delhi. Reporter: Tonight, India's health care systems pushing past te breaking point. We are beyond capacity in our icu. Reporter: Dr. Sumit ray tells us he simply doesn't have enough doctors and nurses to treat the surge of covid-19 patients. And those he does have are overwhelmed and exhausted. Patients have died in the emergency room, because we didn't have a bed in the icu. We just didn't have space. These are lives which could have been saved. Reporter: More than 860 medical professionals have died in India since the pandemic began. 116 losing their lives in less than a month during the ongoing second wave. Now regular people are stepping in, converting this temple into a makeshift clinic. This is all run by volunteers. They are here working 24/7 throughout the night in 100-degree heat, working to save lives. They're administering much needed oxygen. This man struggling for breath. When we arrive, we see a woman rushed into an ambulance after news that a hospital bed had opened up nearby. Sarabjot cared for her all night, he tells us. When she got to the clinic, her blood oxygen was just 54. A healthy person is above 90. Sarabjot says at the peak he was seeing nearly a dozen people die every day. How do you keep coming back every day? It's bad, but we can't really do anything about that. We try our best and that's the best I can do. The best we can offer. Reporter: Pankumar sits with her mother, thankful she found this clinic. She rushed her mother to the hospital, but was turned away. There was no oxygen, no beds. She kept telling us how scared she was. But for so many, it's already too late. These pyres are normally out by nightfall, but there is just so much loss that they are burning throughout the night. The fires, a constant reminder of the immense loss here. And with one estimate predicting 1 million Indians could die from covid-19 by August, the need here is greater than ever. 1 million, just an astounding number. Maggie, the U.S. And other countries have been sending in aid, including much-needed oxygen. But experts say that ultimately, the country needs to ramp up the vaccinations. Reporter: Exactly. Just today, Dr. Fauci told ABC news that the key to ending the crisis in India is by dramatically ramping up vaccinations. Because despite the fact that India is a world leader in vaccine production, here, there's a massive shortage. Right now, only 2% of the country is fully vaccinated. Linsey? Maggie, thank you.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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