Unhappy with the rates fixed by the government for COVID-19 treatment of non-Ayushman Bharat and Arogya Karnataka (AB-ArK) and cash paying patients, the Federation of Healthcare Associations of Karnataka (FHA-K) is planning to appeal to the government to reconsider the rates.

Nagendra Swamy S.C., FHA-K principal coordinator, told The Hindu that the federation has no questions about the rates for AB-ArK patients. “We are with the government in its efforts to control the pandemic. We will not desist or question the rates for patients referred under the government scheme. But the rates for other category, especially in ICU and ICU with ventilator category, are not feasible and far less than what we had proposed. We will appeal to the government to reconsider this,” he said.

While the order on rate fixation does not mention that rates are “per day”. The Order just refers to the price as “package rates.” However, officials from Suvarna Arogya Suraksha Trust (SAST) clarified that the rates are “per day.”

 

Bed facility, rates

Meanwhile, as per the order issued on Thursday, while calculating 50% of the beds to be utilised by patients referred by the government under its scheme, the number will be counted irrespective of whether the beds are located in general wards, sharing wards or private wards.

The package rate ceilings for private patients are for general wards/multi-sharing wards. An additional 10% may be charged for twin-sharing wards and 25% more for single rooms. There will be no ceiling for suites, the order stated.

Requisitioning of hospitals for sending government patients will be done by the BBMP Commissioner in respect of BBMP area, Bengaluru Urban and Bengaluru Rural districts, and Deputy Commissioners for other districts.

In respect of unforeseen complications/surgeries/other co-morbid conditions/pregnancy etc. of COVID-I9 patients, additional packages under AB-ArK packages will apply. The clinical treatment and discharge protocol issued by the State government from time to time should be strictly followed, the order stated.

Besides, all the hospitals should get empanelled through the online portal of Suvama Arogya Suraksha Trust with desktop review of statutory documents by the SAST on a fast forward basis.

‘No compromise’

“Referral of a COVID -19 patient by a public health authority will be treated as auto authorisation by SAST. All COVID-I9 patients, including those belonging to BPL and APL categories, migrant labourers, and interstate returnees not possessing PDS card, will be considered eligible in view of the unprecedented pandemic situation. There should be no compromise on the quality of medical services rendered to the patients referred by the public health authorities and those admitted privately,” the order stated.

Nodal agency

Suvama Arogya Suraksha Trust will be the nodal agency for the settlement of claims.

“Non-compliance to this order will attract punishment under the relevant sections of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, and the Indian Penal Code. This order will be in operation until further orders,” it added.

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