COVID-19 Costs: Take Back Private Hospitals’ Lands, Furious Telangana HC Orders Govt

 - Sakshi Post

HYDERABAD: The Telangana High Court has once again expressed its outrage on private hospitals over what it called as fleecing COVID-19 patients with unduly high charges and exorbitant bills. The HC on Wednesday heard a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) which accused Apollo and Basavatarakam hospitals of violating the COVID-19 treatment guidelines as stipulated by the government.

The petitioner, Om Devara, a retired employee, submitted to the court through his petition that the government had allotted land to several hospitals at subsidised rates on the condition that they provide free medical care to the poorer sections of the society. But Apollo Hospital and Basavatarakam Indo American Cancer Hospital & Research Institute which got the land at subsidized rates, are not providing free medical care to the poor during this COVID-19 crisis, alleged the petitioner.

Responding to this, the high court questioned the Telangana government as to why the lands were not taken back if the hospitals violated the conditions. The HC expressed dismay at the tendency of hospitals in not handing over the dead bodies of patients to their families if they failed to pay up the exorbitantly high treatment costs.

The HC has directed the government to take strict action against private hospitals that are charging unusually high rates for COVID-19 treatment and tests. The court commented that revocation of licences is merely not enough to rein in such hospitals and directed the state government to take back from them.

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