Panjim: The rates finalised by the State government for treatment of COVID-19 in private hospitals appear to be amongst the highest in the country.
States like Maharashtra, Delhi, Rajasthan, Haryana, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu have capped the rates, which are far more reasonable than that of Goa.
As per the rates finalised in Goa, in a general ward with COVID charge the patients can be charged Rs 12,000 per day; twin sharing will be capped at Rs 15,000 per day; private room single will be charged Rs 18,000 per day and ICU with ventilator occupancy would be Rs 25,000 per day.
The charges include bed charges, nursing, resident doctor, diet, PPE kits for staff, routine medicines. Shockingly, despite the huge charges, the package does not include diagnostic intensivisit, specialist or intensivisit charges, use of special drugs, use of special equipment, other special procedures,surgery etc and extra oxygen flow other than ICU.
Now take a look at how some other States have capped the rates:
The Delhi government has capped per-day package rates for COVID-19 treatments in private hospitals between Rs 8,000 and Rs 18,000. The per-day rates, including cost of PPE, in hospitals accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH) are Rs 10,000 for isolation bed, including supportive care and oxygen; Rs 15,000 for ICU without ventilator; and Rs 18,000 for ICU with ventilator.
For the same, the rates in non-NABH accredited hospitals will be Rs 8,000, Rs 13,000, and Rs 15,000 respectively. The rates are all inclusive as a package. This will include, bed, food and other amenities, monitoring, nursing care, doctors’ visits/consults, investigations including imaging, treatment as per the national protocol for COVID care and standard care for co-morbidities, oxygen, blood transfusion etc.
The rates also include costs of medical care of underlying co-morbid conditions, including supportive care and cost of medications, for the duration of care for COVID-19.
The capped charges are a breather to some extent to patients and their families as the per day charge for an ICU bed with a ventilator and isolation facility at the facilities have been capped at Rs 9,000.
Maharashtra has capped charges for routine ward plus isolation at Rs 4,000; Charges for ICU without ventilator plus isolation at Rs 7,500; Charges for ICU with ventilator plus isolation Rs 9,000.
The package includes – monitoring and investigations like CBC, urine routine, HIV spot anti HCV, Hbs Ag, serum creatinine, USG, 2D Echo, X-ray, ECG, drugs consultations, bed charges, nursing charges, meals and procedures like Ryles tube insertion, urinary tract.
The cost does not include – PPEs, interventional procedure like, but not limited to, central line insertion, chemoport insertion, bronchoscopic procedures, biopsies, ascitic/pleural tapping etc, which may be charged at the rack rate as on Dec 31, 2019, COVID testing to be done as per actual cost as per the direction, high-end drugs like immunoglobulins, meropenem, parenteral nutrition, tocilizumab, etc to be charged at MRP as per directions and high-end investigations like CT scan, MRI, PET scan.
The Rajasthan government fixed rates for coronavirus treatment at private hospitals, keeping the charges at Rs 5,000 to Rs 9,900 a day.
The cost of treatment in hospitals not certified by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) has been kept at Rs 5,000 to Rs 9,000 per day. In the NABL-accredited hospitals, the charges have been fixed at Rs 5,500 to Rs 9,900 a day. The treatment cost includes Rs 1,200 of a PPE kit.
In Haryana, the non-accredited private hospitals cannot charge more than Rs 8,000 per day for an isolation bed, including supportive care and oxygen. The same is Rs 10,000 per day for accredited hospitals.
The upper limit for ICU without ventilator a day is Rs 13,000 at non-accredited hospitals and Rs 15,000 for the same in accredited hospitals.
Likewise, the non-accredited hospitals cannot charge more than Rs 15,000 daily for ICU with ventilator while Rs 18,000 has been fixed for the same for accredited hospitals.
A critical patient admitted to a private hospital’s ICU with a ventilator will have to pay Rs 10,000 if recommended by a public health authority. However, a patient who gets direct admission will have to shell out Rs 25,000 for the same package.
For a general ward, patients getting directly admitted will have to pay Rs 10,000 while those with health authority references will be charged Rs 5,200.
In private sector hospitals, the per day charges for treatment in ICUs shall not exceed Rs 15,000 and in general wards, for asymptomatic people and those with mild symptoms, the maximum is Rs 7,500.
For the purpose of fixing upper limit on rates, hospitals have been categorised based on factors like amenities and for the first two levels of Grade A1 and A2 hospitals, the maximum allowable per day fee in general ward and ICU are Rs 7,500 and Rs 15,000 respectively. In the next two levels of hospitals that fall under Grade A3 and A4, the ceiling for charges per day in general ward and the ICU are Rs 5,000 and Rs 15,000.