Curious developments took place in Chhattisgarh on Thursday as the state government issued an order to take control of all private hospitals. However, the order issued by the Directorate of Health Services was rolled back just a few hours later.
"This was a typo. An order to take over a private medical college was to be issued. The Directorate mistakenly issued the order," Niharika Barik Singh, Health Secretary, Chhattisgarh government told BusinessToday.In.
The government had decided to take over private medical college Raipur Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Chattisgarh to treat COVID-19 patients. However, in a goof up within the directorate, the notification that was issued said the government wants to take over all private institutions in the state. The erronous order was withdrawn immediately.
The flip-flop comes amid coronavirus outbreak in the country; Chhattisgarh has so far reported six cases, while the total cases in India have crossed 600.
State governments are scrambling to set up healthcare facilities to treat coronavirus patients. Odisha has announced that it will set up two dedicated hospitals within a fortnight to treat only coronavirus patients.
Chhattisgarh government too seems to be gearing for a situation where it needs many more beds and isolation centres than it currently has. Roping in the private hospitals could be a strategy in that direction.
"Exercising the powers conferred under Clause 3 of the Chhattisgarh Epidemic Diseases COVID-19 Regulations, 2020, all private hospitals and nursing homes are acquired along with all human resources and available medical resources from the date of March 26, 2020 until further orders. The managers of concerned organisations will fully cooperate in running them in accordance to the guidelines issued by the government. This order will be immediately effective," Directorate Health Services, Chhattisgarh said in a statement on Thursday.
However, the state government rolled back its decision to take over private medical facilities due to a clerical error.
On Wednesday night, three new cases of coronavirus were identified in the state, taking the total count of patients to 6. One case each was reported from state capital Raipur, as Durg and Bilaspur. Earlier on Wednesday, two persons, a 26-year-old woman from Raipur and a 26-year-old man from Rajnandgaon, with recent foreign travel history, were found positive for the deadly virus. Last week, the state reported its first case of COVID-19 as a 24-year-old woman who had returned to Raipur from London.
Of the six cases, four have been admitted in AIIMS, Raipur whereas two others are undergoing treatment at different government hospitals.
Meanwhile, death toll in the country due to the respiratory infection reached 13, and total number of active case climbed to 649 on Thursday, according to Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. Of these, 593 patients are still undergoing treatment.