As the government hospitals and health care facilities brim with the Covid patients every hour, private hospitals become the lone solace for asymptomatic Covid patients. Responding to this crisis, the private hospitals in Karnataka have offered to treat such patients from below poverty line (BPL) families for Rs 5,200 per day under the Ayushman Bharat Arogya Karnataka (AB-ArK) health insurance scheme.

Kolkata hospital allows doctors, patients to interact virtually
Kolkata hospital allows doctors, patients to interact virtuallyTwitter

Private hospitals to help the poor

The state government is considering the report submitted by the hospitals on this behalf.

As per the sources, the price set by the Private Hospitals and Nursing Homes Association (PHANA) is nearly one-third of the indicative pricing issued by Association of Healthcare Providers of India (AHPI) for treatment in private hospitals.

According to AHPI estimation, the average daily cost of treatment in these hospitals is Rs 15,000 as a basic ward fee for an asymptomatic patient.

Meanwhile, the cost of hospitalisation for the prescribed seven day isolation period for asymptomatic patients who are on routine check-up and do not require any medicine would be Rs 36,400. This rate can increase if the patient needs oxygen support, or put on ventilator support in ICU.

Rs 7,000 for oxygen support 

The average daily cost of treatment can increase to Rs 7,000 per day if the patient requires oxygen support. This can go up to 8,500 in ICU and Rs 10,000 if a ventilator is required. The charges on PPE and routine drugs are inclusive in PHANA although it excludes the charges on the treatment of comorbidities.

A pharmacy worker shows pills of hydroxychloroquine used to treat the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Belgium.courtesy: Reuters

High-end drugs and plasma therapy, which are proven as effective treatment methods, will be charged with its actual rates.

AHPI whereas has suggested Rs 20,000 per day as the cost of treatment of patients needing oxygen support, Rs 25,000 for ICU, and Rs 35,000 for those on a ventilator.

The new move by the private hospitals association in the state to fix affordable charges from patients Below Poverty Line, helps the patients share their load of burden.

Maharashtra and Gujarat implements the same 

"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.

States like Maharashtra and Gujarat have already fixed the new rates for the treatments. The decision by the Karnataka state government is soon to be announced.