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BBMP to take action against 7 hospitals

Direction to reserve beds not followed.

As Bengaluru continues to report the highest number of cases among all the districts in Karnataka, and amidst warnings of a second wave of the pandemic ahead of Deepavali, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has cracked the whip on hospitals that allegedly failed to reserve the mandated number of beds for government-sponsored COVID-19 patients. Some of them have also been accused of overcharging or denying beds to patients.

Seven hospitals are in the dock for allegedly not complying with the direction of the civic body to reserve beds for BBMP-sponsored COVID-19 patients, and the civic body has decided to take “exemplary action” against them.

According to a statement from BBMP Commissioner N. Manjunath Prasad on Saturday: “Showcause notices have been issued to the seven hospitals under the KPME (Karnataka Private Medical Establishments) Act for suspension of licence. These hospitals have been directed to show cause within the next 24 hours as to why the KPME registration should not be cancelled. If no proper explanation is received within 24 hours along with compliance, the BBMP will be constrained to close down the OPDs (Out Patient Department) at the first instance, and thereafter all the existing patients admitted in these hospitals will be shifted to some other hospitals, and subsequently these hospitals will be closed down.”

Meanwhile, Karnataka is lagging behind in the process of creating a database of healthcare workers, who would be the first beneficiaries of the COVID-19 vaccine when it hits the market. As of now, only a little over 30% of the total 28,753 healthcare facilities in the State have submitted details. The Centre had asked States to submit the database by October 31.

While 89% of government healthcare facilities have submitted details, the response from private facilities has been very poor with not more than 23% filling up the standard database templates. Following this, the State is now planning to request the Centre to extend the deadline by a few more days.

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