THD NewsDesk, New Delhi: Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare in a significant step forward, revised the national policy for admission of COVID patients to various categories of COVID facilities. The policy has been amended in a more patient centric direction.
The statement claims to aim for a more “prompt, effective and comprehensive treatment of patients suffering from COVID19.”
The directive has been given to all States and UTs, hospitals under the Central government, State Governments and Union Territory administration including private hospitals (in States and Union Territories) managing COVID Patients.
The following norms are to be followed:
- Requirement of a positive test for COVID-19 virus is not mandatory for admission to a COVID health facility. A suspect case shall be admitted to the suspect ward of CCC, DCHC or DHC as the case may be.
- No patient will be refused services on any count. This includes medications such as oxygen or essential drugs even if the patient belongs to a different city.
- No patient shall be refused admission on the ground that he/she is not able to produce a valid identity card that does not belong to the city where the hospital is located.
- Admissions to hospital must be based on need. It should be ensured that beds are not occupied by persons who do not need hospitalization. Further, the discharge should be strictly in accordance with the revised discharge policy available at https://www.mohfw.gov.in/pdf/ReviseddischargePolicyforCOVID19.pdf
The Union health ministry has directed the Chief Secretaries of States/Union territories to issue necessary orders and circulars which will stay in effect until replaced by an appropriate uniform policy.
It had earlier instructed a three tier medical infrastructure for the appropriate management of suspect/confirmed COVID-19 cases.
According to the guidance document issued in this regard on 7th April 2020, it states:
- COVID Care Center (CCC) that shall offer care for mild cases. These have been set up in hostels, hotels, schools, stadiums, lodges etc., both public and private. Functional hospitals like CHCs, etc. which may be handling regular, non-COVID cases may also be designated as COVID Care Centres as a last resort.
- Dedicated COVID Health Centre (DCHC) that shall offer care for all cases that have been clinically assigned as moderate. These should either be a full hospital or a separate block in a hospital with preferably separate entry/exit/zoning. Private hospitals may also be designated as COVID Dedicated Health Centres. These hospitals would have beds with assured Oxygen support.
- Dedicated COVID Hospital (DCH) that shall offer comprehensive care primarily for those who have been clinically assigned as severe. These hospitals should either be a full hospital or a separate block in a hospital with preferably separate entry/exit. Private hospitals may also be designated as COVID Dedicated Hospitals. These hospitals would have fully equipped ICUs, Ventilators and beds with assured Oxygen support.
This change in policy in light of the avid rise in cases of Covid 19 and the severe amounts of deaths each day had a much prior call for this step. It would hopefully bring a change to the helpless situation of the people who were suffering more so in availing the treatment than the virus because of the lack of medical infrastructure and a chain of unending protocols.