The Government of Maharashtra has fixed the rates and modalities for the treatment of COVID-19 in various private hospitals in the State. The Department of Public Health of Nagpur Municipal Corporation NMC has issued an order in this regard on 31 August 2020. In accordance with this order, It is mandatory for all concerned hospitals to comply with government notifications and orders issued by the Corporation.
To keep a watch on such ill practices the Municipal Commissioner has appointed auditors to conduct pre-audit of various private hospitals in the city for verification and supervision of the implementation of the order. From the report of these former auditors, the Municipal Commissioner Radhakrishnan B has issued notices to two hospitals for charging more than the permissible rates.
He has also ordered these two hospitals to return a total of Rs 23,96, 050 taken from 76 patients. The two hospitals are Viveka Hospital at Subhashnagar and Seven Star Hospital at Jagannade Chowk. Under the guidance of the Municipal Commissioner, the action was taken against both the hospitals under the Prevention of Infectious Diseases Act, 1897 and other ancillary laws.
Under the leadership of Additional Commissioner Jalaj Sharma, Accounts Officer Sanjay Mandale, Assistant Accounts Officer Rajesh Jibhkate, Assistant Accounts Officer Raju Bawankar, Senior Accounts Officer Anil Bhure, Assistant Accounts Officer Rajendra Chintalwar, Tax Inspector Pradip Bagde, Dr. Harsha Meshram, and Dr. Sajia Shams conducted the investigation.
As per the report submitted by the auditors appointed by the Corporation, it was found that Viveka Hospital at Subhash Nagar had levied additional rates of ‘Refreshment Charges’, PPE kits, in excess of the allowable rate on COVID patients without charging them as per Form ‘C’ in the Government Notification. An additional amount of Rs. 17,97,040 was recovered from 50 patients in the above form by this hospital.
It also reported that the Seven Star Hospital at Jagannade Chowk also charged extra in violation of the rules. In addition to the hospital’s allowable rates, in addition to ‘Biomedical Waste Handling Charge’, ‘COVID Staff Management Charge and Inspection Control and Sanitation Charge’, and ‘Housekeeping Care and Hygiene Maintenance Charge’ It became clear.
Action has been taken against both the hospitals under the Prevention of Infectious Diseases Act, 1897 and it is mandatory for these hospitals to reimburse the patients within two days. Municipal Commissioner Radhakrishnan B. directed the hospitals to submit the compliance report to the corporation office along with the proof of refund to the concerned patients.
In case of non-compliance with the order within the prescribed period, action will be taken under the communicable diseases Act 1897, Disaster Management Act 2005, Maharashtra Emergency Services Management Act 2011, Mumbai Public Trust Act 1950, Mumbai Nursing Home Amendment Act 2006, Mumbai Nursing Home Registration Amendment Act 2006 and other related acts against the concerned hospital concerned.