Panaji, Sep 17 (IANS) The BJP-led coalition government in Goa should subsidise the “steep” charges of private hospitals for Covid-19 treatment to mark Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s birthday, state Congress president Girish Chodankar said on Thursday.
In a statement, Chodankar said that the government’s decision to cap the cost of treatment of Covid-19 patients in private hospitals still led to “exorbitant” charges and claimed that the government as well as the private healthcare promoters had a “one point agenda” of doing “business from peoples sickness”.
“The BJP government under Dr Pramod Sawant must immediately either take over private hospitals treating Covid patients or announce subsidised charges for patients in private hospitals to mark the birthday of Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji and prove the intentions of the BJP to provide ‘Seva’ to the people of Goa,” Chodankar said.
“In these critical times of Covid pandemic the BJP Government has once again displayed its insensitive nature towards the common man and its love for crony capitalists by approving huge charges for Covid treatment in private hospitals,” he said, adding that the Covid-19 case graph in Goa was on the rise, because the state government did not create the required health infrastructure during the lockdown.
“Now, it is the duty of the government to ensure that Covid patients are provided health care at affordable rates,” he added.
On Wednesday Sawant had announced the capping of the cost of Covid-19 treatment at private hospitals.
As per the announcement, a private hospital can charge up to Rs 12,000 per day for treatment in a general ward, Rs 15,000 for a twin shared room, Rs 18,000 per day for a private room, with prices for ICU facilities capped at Rs 25,000 per day.
The package includes bed charges, nursing, resident doctor fees, diet, PPE kits for staff and routine medicine, but excludes special medication or equipment, non routine procedures or surgeries, etc.
“Private hospitals were charging high rates to the tune of up to Rs 25,000 per night. We have decided these capped rates in consultation with the medical professionals and with the private facilities,” Sawant said.
The state has a total tally of 25,511 confirmed Covid-19 cases, while 315 persons who tested positive have died in Goa ever since the pandemic broke out.