K’taka to ensure private hospital beds for Covid patients

Karnataka government has deputed seven teams of two senior officers each to ensure that 50 per cent private hospital beds are made available for Covid-19 patients, amid complaints of treatment denials, an official said on Monday.

“In order to ensure that the private medical institutions strictly adhere to the reserving of beds, teams of senior officers are constituted,” said Chief Secretary T. M.Vijay Bhaskar in the capacity of chairman of state executive committee.

The teams of senior officers will be assisted by an officer each from the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) and Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (BESCOM), along with an Arogya Mitra from the Suvarna Arogya Suraksha Trust.

Bhaskar highlighted that certain private medical institutions are denying admission to Covid patients referred by the civic body authorities invoking provisions from the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and Epidemic Diseases Act.

State Health and Family Welfare Department has ordered the private hospitals to reserve 50 per cent beds for Covid patients.

“It has come to the knowledge of the government that certain private medical institutions are denying admission to such referred patients and self-reporting symptomatic patients who are under distress, on some pretext or the other,” he said.

Bhaskar highlighted that Covid patients referred by the civic body authorities should not be denied against the beds reserved under the government quota.

“All the admissions and discharges of the Covid patients in the hospitals are done through the hospital bed management portal provided by the BBMP and SAST for both Covid patients referred under government quota of beds and for the private beds administered by the private medical institutions,” said Bhaskar.

Similarly, he also directed the hospitals to display a board showcasing bed allocation with information of beds reserved under the government quota and also those not referred by the government, including details of occupied and vacant beds.

Hospitals should also display the phone numbers of supervising officers for an individual to contact them in the event of treatment or admission denial.

Bhaskar entrusted 14 officers to oversee 31 private hospitals such as Manipal Hospital, Apollo, Narayana Hrudayalaya, M. S.Ramaiah Hospital, Columbia Asia Hospital and others.

On Sunday, Karnataka reported 4,120 Covid positive cases, raising its tally to 63,772, the majority of the cases are centred in Bengaluru.