Kohima: The Nagaland government has directed all private hospitals in the state to reserve at least 50% of the hospital beds for treatment of COVID-19 patients to meet the emergency requirements.

According to a new order issued by Nagaland chief secretary J Alam, projections were made for the number of ICU beds, oxygen-supported beds and ward beds following a discussion at the state-level COVID war room.

It said that the need for mobilising resources available in the private hospitals was necessitated to ensure effective management of COVID-19 patients, as discussed with the representatives of private hospitals on Monday and Tuesday.

Therefore, under section 24 and 65 of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and Section 2 of the Epidemic Diseases Act 1897, it directed all private hospitals to provide for treatment of COVID-19 patients as per the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and reserve at least 50% of the bed capacity of the normal wards and the ICU available with the private hospitals for treatment of COVID-19 patients.

It informed that the District Task Force (DTF) will ensure compliance of the order. The government also provided guidelines for the hospitals in screening, testing, managing of COVID-19 positive patients, infection control and handling of dead bodies and so on.

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For the treatment charges for managing COVID-19 patients, it said that charges must be at a reasonable rate. The rates charged by the hospitals are required to be notified by the concerned hospital authority and must be displayed prominently for wide visibility.

It warned that non-compliance of the order will be liable to penalty under Epidemic Act 1897 and Disaster Management Act 2005, along with legal provisions under relevant sections of the Nagaland Healthcare Establishment Act 1997, IPC and other legal provisions applicable.

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