Other States

State govt. says private hospitals can’t turn back patients

The West Bengal government is set to issue an advisory to private hospitals making clear that they cannot turn back patients and directing private clinics and doctors’ private chambers to remain open during the ongoing lockdown.

“Private hospital will have to be more energetic,” Chief Secretary Rajiva Sinha said. “Patients are not admitted. We have to ensure that they do not refuse patients...We are issuing an advisory,” added Mr. Sinha.

“This is a strange situation when clinics are shut and thus doctors are saying that they cannot treat patients as they have their chambers in the private clinic’s building,” said a patient’s relative, speaking on condition of anonymity. “On the other hand, clinics’ management are saying that doctors are not coming and thus they are keeping clinics shut. Moreover, my relative is refused by a hospital as she had fever due to urinary tract infection. Many private hospitals are shut too,” the relative added.

Noting that there had been a complaint that individuals suspected of COVID-19 infection and government doctors were being transported in the same ambulance, Mr. Sinha assured that this would be rectified. Making life saving drugs available and training requirement for use of PPE were two other issues highlighted by the Chief Secretary. “We are in the process of setting up a separate hospital for the health workers,” Mr. Sinha said. He added that the State government was “obliged”to the central medical team for coming to the State and providing valuable inputs.

Fresh cases

While 28 new cases were reported in the last 24 hours, testing increased by 1,180 over the same period, which is the highest so far. The cases were from five districts — Kolkata, South and North 24 Paraganas, Hooghly and Howrah. “75% of the cases are from Kolkata, Howrah, North 24 Paraganas, rest from other two,” Mr. Sinha said. Ten persons were cured and discharged in the last 24 hours.

Meanwhile, Howrah’s Tikiapara area saw a breakdown in law and order with locals attacking personnel of the Rapid Action Force (RAF).

“Lockdown was very strictly imposed, people are not allowed to go out at all and often publicly insulted and beaten up by police,” said a shop owner from Tikiapara. “The people retaliated on Tuesday evening, pelting stones and chasing the RAF,” he added.

A minor clash between the police and the locals was also reported from Pranshree area in southwest Kolkata. In south Kolkata’s Kasba area, the local market was shifted to a neighbourhood field “without any prior planning,” alleged local shop owners. Heavy rain damaged goods and the shop owners demanded compensation from the local councillor. The market would now be relocated to the main arterial road connecting south Kolkata to the airport, according to officials.

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 8:50:06 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/state-govt-says-private-hospitals-cant-turn-back-patients/article31457230.ece

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