Taking a serious view of private and corporate hospitals not following proper diagnostic and treatment protocol for dengue, Health Minister D. L. Ravindra Reddy said the government will invoke provisions of the Clinical Establishment Act, 2007, and take action against such institutions.

Commercially exploiting the ‘dengue' scare among people due to the hype created by the electronic media, some private hospitals and practitioners were treating all viral cases as if they were dengue positive cases without the WHO mandated ELISA and NS1antigen tests suggested by the Centre for confirmation, Dr. Ravindra Reddy said at a media conference here on Thursday.

These hospitals were charging anywhere between Rs.10,000 to Rs.15,000 for one unit of blood platelets transfusion without confirming the patient was indeed suffering from dengue and that he genuinely needed platelets, he said. The corporate hospitals charged from Rs.1 lakh to Rs.3 lakh from patients undergoing treatment in the name of dengue.

He said that a campaign would be launched from November 7 to 17 to create awareness about dengue and prevention and government had already appointed nodal officers to the affected districts and released Rs.2.16 crore for giving diagnostic kits, providing mobility for medical personnel in tribal areas. Twenty six sentinel centres equipped to do ELISA and NS1 tests for 7,500 samples were already set up. Only after dengue was confirmed, treatment protocol should be followed by the doctors and hospitals, he said.

A meeting was convened with AP Nursing Homes and AP Super-speciality Hospitals Associations on Oct. 31 for strict adherence to treatment protocol. Meanwhile, Collectors were given instructions to take action against corporate hospitals fleecing patients, he added.

Meanwhile the Minister said this year 636 dengue cases were reported - 165 positive cases in Warangal, 114 in Krishna, 99 in Prakasam, 50 in Karimnagar and 43 in Adilabad and three deaths were reported in the State so far. In Kurnool, of 706 samples of viral fever tested, no single case of dengue was found. The report sought by National Child Rights Commission about viral fevers would be submitted by month-end, he added.