HYDERABAD: The Telangana government has instructed private hospitals which are providing COVID-19 treatment, to charge personal protective equipment (PPE) and high-end drugs at Maximum Retail Price (MRP) and not add any extra charge over it.
The state government has taken this decision as most of the private hospitals are charging high amounts from patients on PPE and other drugs. The director of public health Dr. G. Srinivasa Rao on Wednesday issued directions to all private hospital managements treating COVID-19 patients to also display MRP of these drugs and PPEs. Rao said that the orders will come into immediate effect.
As per the fresh rules, it is also mandatory for the hospitals to display the MRP of PPE kits and high end drugs at prominent locations within the hospital, and to provide bills of all items to the patients while discharging.
He warned the hospital managements of serious action against them if they were found violating the fresh rules, under the Telangana Allopathic Private Medical Care Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Act 2002, Epidemic Diseases Act 1897 and Disaster Management Act 2005.
Meanwhile, the Telangana government on August 3 revoked COVID-19 treatment permission to two Hyderabad-based private hospitals - Virinchi and Deccan - on charges of inappropriate and surplus billing, after several complaints were filed against these two hospitals.
The state government had also formed a committee to inquire on 1,039 complaints against private hospitals treating COVID-19 patients. Officials said that complaints were made against almost all the private hospitals.
Two days ago, even the Telangana Health Minister Etela Rajender warned private hospitals that the government would take over 50 per cent of their beds, if they continue to charge high amounts from COVID-19 patients.
Meanwhile, Telangana has reported 1,931 new COVID-19 cases and 11 deaths on Thursday, August 13. With this, the cumulative coronavirus cases in the state rose to 86,475 and the death toll due to the virus went up to 665. Currently, there are 22,736 active cases of coronavirus in the state and a total of 63,074 people were recovered from the virus till date.