May 10, 2021 3:00:47 am
The decision by Nepal’s government to make the Health Ministry’s permission mandatory for supply of oxygen to hospitals in the country has triggered protests from hospitals that warned they may be forced to discharge patients prematurely.
A government release said oxygen plants should not supply oxygen directly to hospitals, and that “hospitals must procure permission or clearance” from the Ministry of Health.
Within hours of the decision, some private hospitals called patients’ families, asking them to take the patients home as the hospitals would not be able to supply the required oxygen. “We are running out of stock and we cannot hold it beyond tomorrow,” Dr Kedarnarsingh K C, a physician at the B P Smriti Hospital and former president of the Nepal Medical Association said.
Four major hospital said they would be unable to admit patients if the supply of oxygen was interrupted.
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