Friday, July 3, 2020 | ePaper

Official orders cannot force proper treatment at hospitals

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THE Health Ministry issued a warning in the last week of March that no government or private hospital could refuse to provide treatment to any patient from now on. Later, on April 4, the Health Minister said that the government would take stern actions, including cancelling licences, if private hospitals and clinics denied treatment to patients even with Covid-19 symptoms.
The private hospitals may be justified to refuse coronavirus contagious patients on the ground of lack of special facilities for such patients. To have patients mean financial gain to a hospital. Then in absence of proper facilities of strict isolation of corona patients the other patients will be infected by coronavirus. So this not a simple matter to ask the hospitals not to refuse patients.
We have ministers so incompetent that they try to listen before showing their power. Has the minister tried to know the reasons for refusing patients and losing money and reputation? We know he does not know his job and did not try to learn. Medical treatment does not occur just by giving orders. The hospitals must be properly equipped and doctors working conditions must be secured.
 Ordering that no patient can be refused admission is no assurance of proper treatment. It is the responsibility of knowing how to prepare hospitals for good treatment under healthy conditions. In this respect the government criminally neglected to equip the government hospitals. Sufficient money was not ear marked for the health sector. Even then there was widespread corruption. The general grievance against the Anti-Corruption Commission is that it is less concerned with corruption involving public money in public offices forgetting that the main purpose of such a powerful commission is to clean corruption involving public money. But our Commission is more busy checking private sector corruption. Otherwise some previous Health Ministers would have been in jail and a proper lesson would have learned by public servants.
Many hospitals are not only ill-equipped for treatment but also conditions are unhygienic. The truth is many corona patients will prefer to die without going to our hospitals. We must change the degrading image of our hospitals in the eyes of the public.
We would like to see the Health Minister visit hospitals to find the Ministry's failure to organise the hospitals for Covid-19 treatment -- both government and private. The rich people go abroad for expensive treatment because they find hospitals are not hygienically clean and the doctors lack facilities for treatment.
We cannot afford to have ministers who are incompetent to do their jobs. Money making politics has destroyed the good governance under competent ministers.

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