In a major relief to Coronavirus patients, the Uddhav Thackeray-led government on Tuesday announced rationalisation of COVID-19 treatment rates at private hospitals in Maharashtra.
The previous rates, prescribed by the government during the first wave of the pandemic, were based on the rates prevalent in Mumbai, said health minister Rajesh Tope. "We have now decided to rationalise them further, so the charges will be reduced in tehsil- and district-level hospitals," he said. The decision was taken at a cabinet held with colleagues and officials on Tuesday.
“Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has approved the notification to ensure that private hospitals in the state don’t overcharge patients for COVID-19 treatment. He has also directed the District Collectors and Municipal Commissioners for strict and effective implementation,” the Maharashtra CMO said in a tweet.
As per the revised guidelines, the cost for routine wards and isolation beds in Class A, Class B and C cities of Maharashtra will be capped at Rs 4,000, Rs 3,000 and Rs 2,400 respectively. Similarly, ICU beds and ventilators would cost Rs 9,000, Rs 6,700 and Rs 5,400 in the three categories of cities. The cost includes health monitoring, medication, oxygen support, consultations, bed charges, nursing as well as meals. It however excludes interventional procedures and high-end medications.
CM Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray has approved notification to ensure that Private Hospitals in the state cannot overcharge patients for COVID treatment.— CMO Maharashtra (@CMOMaharashtra) June 1, 2021
He has also directed the District Collectors & Municipal Commissioners for strict & effective implementation. pic.twitter.com/bdgTUQ2OML
The government has also identified the private hospitals where the coronavirus infection treatment would be covered under the Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Jan Arogya Yojana (MJPJAY), the state's health insurance scheme, he said.
"The government has announced various packages for treatment covering all the costs including doctor's visit and bed charges," Tope said. "Maharashtra is a progressive state, so the government is bearing the expenses of treatment.”
According to the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Maharashtra on Tuesday reported 18,423 new COVID-19 cases with 33,000 recoveries and 500 deaths. The total active cases of the state remain at 2,56,178 with 53,95,370 total recoveries and 95,344 deaths.
Besides COVID-19, mucormycosis (black fungus) treatment is also covered under the MJPJAY, he noted. "There are some 4,000 cases of mucormycosis in the state at present. We are trying to make the medicine for it available to all patients," the health minister said.