The caseload of Covid-19 patients continues to be borne by private hospitals in Ahmedabad, with a large number of patients getting admitted from outside Ahmedabad. Many of them have also preferred to pay for their treatment.
Of the 3,105 active cases in hospitals in the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) limits, 2,198 are in private hospitals. Of these 2,198 patients, nearly 112 are from other states, the maximum being from Rajasthan — 89, followed by seven each from Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. Nearly 450 patients in Ahmedabad’s private hospitals are from other districts, including Kutch, with the highest from Gandhinagar — 48.
Of the total patients in the private hospitals, patients on beds reserved by the AMC are 933, where they don’t have to pay for the treatment. The remaining 1,265 are on private quota. Nearly 900 patients are in government Covid-19 hospitals.
Ahmedabad Municipal Commissioner Mukesh Kumar said, “The Ahmedabad model of designating private hospitals as Covid hospitals by the corporation along with government and private sector sharing the burden has worked out successfully.”
Patients from Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Hyderabad, Karnataka, Odisha, Punjab and Telangana are also in AMC hospitals, and they can avail the free treatment facility as special cases.
The AMC had started designating private hospitals as Covid-19 hospitals through Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) since May 16. After some resistance initially from the private health sector, the AMC had signed the MoU with over 65 private hospitals.
The early preparation by private hospitals in Ahmedabad and lack of interest from their counterparts from other districts have led to patients from other districts coming to the city hospitals, said Dr Anish Chandarana, director of CIMS hospital in Ahmedabad that has so far reported the highest number of patients from outside Ahmedabad.
“I kept on telling my doctor friends in other districts to prepare for Covid care. But possibly due to lack of interest in learning and adapting the success by other districts pushed patients to Ahmedabad. Also, other possible factors like inadequate infrastructure and ventilators even in cities like Surat are known to all. Thus, other districts failed to build a trust factor among Covid-19 patients,” Dr Chandarana said.
“They (private hospitals in other districts) are one-and-a- half months behind Ahmedabad in Covid care. Also, government and private collaboration could not be a success in other districts,” Dr Chandarana added.
Out of the total 1,565 patients treated so far at CIMS hospital, 427 are from outside the city and 133 from outside Gujarat. Former union minister Bharatsinh Solanki was among those who spent over 100 days at CIMS and was discharged earlier this month.
On the high number patients from neighbouring districts including Gandhinagar in Ahmedabad, president of Ahmedabad Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association (AHNA) Dr Bharat Gadhavi said, “This could be due to proximity of Gandhinagar, lack of adequate infrastructure along with earlier experience at the private hospitals. For instance, patients or their family members who have visited a private hospital earlier prefer to visit the same hospital,”
The other districts from where patients come to Ahmedabad hospitals are Mehsana with 33 patients, 22 each from Sabarkantha and Surendranagar. This is followed by Kutch (20), Rajkot (17), Kheda (16), Aravalli (12), Banaskantha (11) and Jamnagar (11).
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines