This is an app for all collection centres to provide real-time data in order to minimise duplication and error. It is linked to the main database of the Union health ministry. The app has replaced the earlier practice of collecting the data manually.
The FIR, a copy of which is with TOI, has been filed under Section 188 of IPC which deals with disobeying an order promulgated by a public servant and is a punishable offence.
Dr D S Rana, chairman (board of management) of the hospital, said the government action was due to some miscommunication that would be sorted out soon.
Medical body criticises move
Filed by deputy health secretary Anil Kumar Pamasi, on behalf of the state government, the complaint alleges the hospital wasn’t using the app till June 3, almost a month after an order made it mandatory for all accredited labs to use the app so that all Covid-19 suspected cases could be tracked and monitored.
“This a clear violation of the direction issued under Epidemic Diseases Covid-19 Regulation, 2020, issued under Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897. Therefore, the government has requested the police to file an FIR… against the medical superintendent,” says the complaint.
This follows the initiation of an inquiry against the hospital – one of the prominent private hospitals in the city – and at least seven labs for the same reason. Some of the labs have also been reprimanded for testing too many asymptomatic people.
Delhi Medical Association (DMA) has criticised the government move. “DMA strongly condemns this act of threatening and intimidating healthcare workers. The doctors of Delhi are already overworked and overstressed in this hour of pandemic and the state government is unnecessarily putting pressure on the healthcare system,” said DMA president Dr S S Wadhwa.
Ganga Ram was among the first few private hospitals to designate two of its smaller units — Sir Ganga Ram City (140 beds) and Sir Ganga Ram Kolmet (40 beds) — for Covid-19 treatment. Recently, Delhi government ordered that its main hospital, which has 635 beds, should also reserve 80% of its beds for Covid-19 patients.
Many doctors at the hospital have criticised the government action. “As a clinician, I am unhappy with the recent Delhi government orders. Universal Covid testing in hospitals, along with strict segregation of Covidpositive and Covid-negative patients, must be mandatory,” said Dr Sujay Shad, senior consultant, cardiac surgery. “The current order places the health and lives of our staff and patients at risk. I am particularly worried about recent bypass patients who carry a 35% risk of not surviving hospitalisation if they contract Covid-19.”
Dr Abha Mazumdar, director and head of IVF, said they had at least 400 patients waiting to undergo IVF or those who are facing a high-risk pregnancy. “Where should they go? I have some patients who have been waiting for three months for the lockdown.”
“A majority of my patients are high-risk pregnancies with multiple complications which can be dealt with only in a tertiary care hospital. Most of them are worried about losing their pregnancies and baby. I also have patients from all over the country in the middle of IVF cycles and have been waiting in Delhi for over three months. These patients deserve care which they currently cannot seek at Ganga Ram because of the disproportionate allocation to Covid,” said Dr Majumdar.
Dr Alok Roy, co-chairman of FICCI’s health services committee and chairman of the Medica Group of Hospitals, said this was no way to treat an institution that has provided great humanitarian services over the past many decades. “There must be some misunderstanding and the government should look into it to resolve and clarify on priority. It is our appeal to Delhi government that at this stage both government and private institutions must work together,” he said.
In Video:TOI Daily: FIR filed against Ganga Ram Hospital for not using Covid-19 test app