DIMAPUR, MAY 9: Private hospitals were caught off-guard when the State Government issued a notification on May 5, directing them to reserve 50% of the beds for COVID-19 patients.
While it was seen as a natural and even a welcome move, by the State Government, against the backdrop of the surging COVID cases, it created quite a flutter among private practitioners, especially here at Dimapur, as the Government listed 37 private healthcare facilities in the district.
In the list, among some major private hospitals, were diagnostic labs, dispensary and eye hospital too.
On May 7, the private practitioners here held a meeting with the District Task Force and requested to rectify the list, a source said.
And on Sunday, they had a meeting with the Principal Director of Health and Family Welfare, Dr Neikhrielie Khimiao at Hotel Saramati, Dimapur.
“We shared our problems and our willingness to work hand-in-hand with the Government because we all want to serve the people,” the source said.
According to the Principal Director, the meeting they had a “fruitful discussion pertaining to the COVID-19 crisis”.
“They expressed their concern, especially regarding manpower and oxygen supply. It has to be said that they are all willing to help at this time of crisis, which is a good gesture on their part,” he told Nagaland Page after the meeting.
As the head of the Department, Khimiao said, it was his duty to see and address the concerns of medical workers “Be it in the private or Government sector”.
He said that the manpower issue raised by the private hospitals could be genuine in some cases. “Manpower may not be that adequate. In that sense, the directive to reserve 50% beds may not be feasible in reality, especially for those hospitals with 10-15 beds and 1 or 2 doctors and nurses. They will also have to be quarantined,” he said.
According to him, the crisis is managed by the War Room headed by the Chief Secretary, who had issued the May 5 notification.
“I’ll convey the message (to the higher ups) tomorrow. At my level, I cannot say this has to be like this. I’ll inform the Government,” he said.
The Principal Director reiterated that there was no “clash of ideas” between the Department and the private hospitals. “In times of crisis, everyone is willing to give their best,” he maintained.
(Page News Service)