While many private hospitals in Vizag have been diligently treating Covid-19 patients, there are a few private hospitals that are apparently seeking to make a profit from these difficult circumstances. As per reports, these hospitals were repeatedly given warnings and notices to abide by the Government’s norms and treat patients accordingly. But it seems they have paid no heed to those warnings and continue to exploit patients. This comes after the State government’s call to provide free treatment for patients under the Aarogyasri scheme. Such hospitals in Vizag are being fined stringently for violating the norms.
A total of 57 private hospitals have been given permission for treating Covid -19 patients under the Aarogyasri scheme. However, many of these hospitals are not following the norms. Instead of supporting the cause during these testing times, few private hospitals have got involved in the illegal sale of Remdesivir injections, and few others in overcharging for Covid-19 treatment. It is learned that such hospitals are making the patient pay an advance of Rs 2 lakh, a daily fee of Rs 40,000 and to top it all, an additional charge on injections.
In the last one week, notices have been served to many hospitals. While few paid fines and have mellowed down to adhere to the norms, some hospitals have refused to abide by them. Few private hospitals have been red-handedly caught overcharging patients. In the last two days, a total of 25 hospitals have been fined Rs 52 lakh in total for non-compliance with orders, non-allocation of 50 percent Aarogyasri beds, and overcharging. Similar fines were imposed on six hospitals a few days back.
The following hospitals in Vizag have been fined respectively in the past few days:
Q1 Hospital has been charged Rs. 5 Lakhs. Navya Green, Adrenaline, Daya, Seven Hills, Ujwal, Sushruta ENG and Pawan Sai have been charged Rs. 3 lakhs each and Rs. 2 lakhs each, separately. Satyadev, Venkatarama, Smile Care and Pinnacle hospitals have been charged Rs. 1 lakh each.
During the previous inspections at AN Beach, KKR, Ramya, SR, Shraddha and Aditya hospitals were imposed fines. James and Durga hospitals and Aditya Hospital management were given warnings on providing treatment under the Aarogyasri scheme. “We have found many hospitals violating norms and rejecting covid-19 patients under Aarogyasri or overcharging for the treatment. Advising the private hospitals to follow Covid-19 norms, we have been conducting inspections and registering cases against those hospitals violating norms,” said Visakhapatnam Joint Collector P Arun Babu.