BENGALURU: Private hospital associations have proposed to the government a COVID-19 treatment cost of around Rs 10,000 per day for general ward and Rs 20,000 for special ward with ICU and ventilator facilities, sources revealed.
The state government is in talks with private hospitals to evolve a pricing plan for treating COVID patients, should the situation come to a stage where private hospitals have to share the burden of patient load.
Maharashtra and Gujarat have already negotiated the rates for various slabs of treatment with private hospitals.
In Gujarat, depending on the bed charges, the cost varies between Rs 10,000 and Rs 23,000.
In Maharashtra, a routine ward and isolation costs Rs 4,000 per day, while services with ICU and without a ventilator costs Rs 7,500 and with a ventilator, Rs 9,000. Now, government hospitals are treating most of the corona patients and the cost comes to around Rs 3.5 lakh per patient.
This includes N95 masks, PPE kits, triple-layer masks, sanitisers, medicines, equipment purchased for Covid, building works, conversion to COVID wards, salaries of staff, investigation charges, meals for staff and patients, logistics and transport.
“There are three types of patients. One, asymptomatic, who have to be isolated in general wards as they can still be a harm to society until tested negative. The second, with mild symptoms like fever and cold who can receive symptomatic treatment at any isolation ward of a nursing home. The third category is 10 per cent of the people who need high-intensity monitoring with or without a ventilator and need high-end care in the ICU,” another source said.
“We have taken into consideration the rates fixed by other states and what insurance companies have paid so far to arrive at the rates proposed to the government. We have in fact quoted lower than the treatment cost and the figure includes the cost of PPEs. If a patient has co-morbidities, such as cancer, kidney issues requiring dialysis, liver problems, etc, the cost will increase,” the source added.
The treatment cost could go up to Rs 30,000 per day if a patient is on a ventilator. A decision is likely to be announced by the government in a day or two, another source revealed.
“The average cost per day at a government hospital comes to Rs 30,000 per corona patient. It goes up if high-end antibiotics are used for ICU patients. Whether the government will provide us PPE kits and at what cost needs to be decided as well,” said Dr Naresh Shetty, president, MS Ramaiah Memorial Hospital.
Dr R Ravindra, president, Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association, said, “We need to invest in high-flow oxygen and negative-pressure operation theatres. This is so that you do not want the contaminated air inside the operation theatre spreading outside.”