Corona outbreak: BMC spends ₹1K per quarantine bed daily at Seven Hills HospitalUpdated: Mar 24, 2020 00:49 IST
While the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) plans to increase the number of quarantine beds at the private Seven Hills Hospital in Andheri (East), it will need to do so by increasing its budget.
At present, BMC is spending almost ₹3 lakh per day for the treatment of suspected quarantined patients admitted at Seven Hills Hospital. This budget is expected to go up when the bed strength of the hospital is increased from 350 to 500 by the end of the week.
According to the information provided by BMC, it is spending ₹1,000 for each suspected patient kept under observation at Seven Hills Hospital. Till Monday afternoon, 271 patients were kept under observation at the hospital. Kasturba Gandhi Hospital, which is the main quarantine centre in the city, has 100 beds.
“We have divided the budget into direct and indirect categories. For food, hygiene, and precautionary kits, it costs around ₹400 per patient, which comes under direct need. For internet and magazines which are required for entertainment, along with maintenance, we spend another ₹600 per patient,” said Suresh Kakani, additional commissioner (health), BMC.
At the hospital, each patient is given three surgical masks along with three pairs of gloves daily as a precaution against any possible transmission of infections among others. “We provide 16 masks and 16 pairs of gloves to each hospital staff member including doctors, nurses, and ward boys daily,” Kakani said.
In 2005, BMC made a contract with Seven Hills Healthcare Pvt Ltd, through which the latter was allowed to construct a 1,496-bed hospital in exchange for reserving 20% of the beds for economically-poor patients. But later, the civic body, claimed that the hospital did not abide by the rules of the lease contract and had also failed to pay the annual rent of ₹10 lakh. In 2018, BMC issued a termination notice to the hospital.
In view of Covid-19 cases, BMC converted the hospital – which was dysfunctional – into a 350-bedded quarantine facility.