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Friday, June 25, 2021

Private hospitals overcharging Covid patients won’t be spared: Punjab health minister

Complaints can be lodged via the ‘104’ helpline.

By: Express News Service | Ludhiana |
Updated: May 18, 2021 12:04:24 am
Private hospitals overcharging Covid patients won’t be spared: Punjab health ministerPunjab health minister announced that a state-level committee would soon conduct detailed audit of the treatments of Covid-19 patients done by private hospitals. (File Photo)

PUNJAB HEALTH Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Monday said that the government will take stringent action against hospitals which are overcharging for Covid treatment.

While presiding over a virtual meeting with the state-level committee of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), he said, “We are receiving complaints of private hospitals fleecing patients by charging above the rates fixed by the government. If any hospital does so they will not be spared.”

Sidhu said that if a hospital or a doctor exploits any patient, the government will be forced to take very stringent action against them under the Epidemic Diseases Act. The government is empowered to shut the hospital, or take control of the hospital, he added.

“Our doctors and paramedical staff (both public and private) have set a good example of serving the people during these difficult times wholeheartedly but there are some black sheep in the system…Such people are putting a great dent on the image of the profession,” said Sidhu.

He further said that strict measures are being taken to curb blackmarketing of medicines and oxygen in the state. The government is also taking legal action against vendors supplying less quantity while refilling oxygen cylinders and charging exorbitant rates.

He announced that a state-level committee would soon conduct detailed audit of the treatments of Covid-19 patients done by private hospitals. Anyone can file a complaint regarding the same on the ‘104’ helpline number of the health department.

Sidhu said that on Tuesday, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh would interact with all sarpanches through video conferencing and issue instructions to contain spread of Covid-19 in the villages.

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) assured the health minister and principal secretary (health) regarding their full support to the state government.

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