The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is all set to file FIRs against four private hospitals for allegedly failing to comply with the directions of the State government and reserve 50% of their beds for COVID-19 patients.
BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad, on Thursday, announced that he has written to the jurisdictional police to file cases under relevant sections of the Disaster Management Act.
“Many hospitals gave us details of the bed count, including those reserved for dialysis, neonatal care and emergency. However, we were not satisfied with the explanation of these four hospitals,” Mr. Prasad said.
Testing to be doubled
He added that during a video conference on Wednesday, attended by the Chief Minister and other senior senior officials, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, directions had been issued to reduce the COVID-19 positivity rate and mortality rate.
“Bengaluru was directed to bring down the positivity rate to 5% and mortality rate to less than 1%. Currently, the positivity rate is 13.48% and mortality rate is around 1.4%,” he added.
Increasing the number of tests was the only solution to reducing both positivity and mortality rates. “The BBMP is conducting around 20,000 tests a day while private laboratories and hospitals are conducting around 5,000 tests a day. Both these numbers should double,” he pointed out.
The BBMP plans to have stricter monitoring protocols for COVID-19 patients in home isolation. As many as 58% of the total patients in the city are in home isolation.
Mr. Prasad said focus will be given to testing residents in micro containment zones. He noted that stigma had reduced to some extent after the BBMP had stopped barricading and putting posters on the door of homes where residents had tested positive for COVID-19.