Congress Leader Debabrata Saikia has filed a petition against hospitals refusing treatment to non-COVID patients Credit: Twitter image

Guwahati: Leader of Opposition and senior Congress leader Debarata Saikia has filed Public Interest Litigation (PIL) at the Gauhati High Court against hospitals that have refused to admit patients who are unable to furnish COVID 19 medical reports.

The MLA from Nazira constituency has urged the High Court’s intervention on the issue.

“Numerous hospitals in Assam have refused to entertain the urgent admissions of many critically ill people due to the non-production of non-COVID medical certificates. Such people also include accident-related critically injured cases, in which urgent medical care is vital and of paramount importance. Resultantly, many people succumbed to their injuries sustained during the accidents” noted the PIL.

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Considering other health emergencies that require immediate medical attention, the petition also added, “Other vulnerable patients like pregnant women, cardiac patients, etc are also not admitted in the hospital without the non-COVID medical certificate.”

The matter was heard by a division bench of Chief Justice Ajay Lamba and Justice Manish Choudhary. After the tabling of the petition, the bench posted that the matter will be heard on October 19 for further consideration.

Counsel representing Saikia, Syed Burhanur Rahman mentioned that despite a union government notification issued in April to all the states and union territories which stated that anyone in need of any essential critical care cannot be refused medical attention.

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The hospitals insist on providing such COVID-19 negative certificates before admission, “Such non-COVID medical certificates are insisted by the hospitals before admission, despite the office communication bearing no. DO 7(23)/2020-NHM-I dated 28.04.2020 made by Secretary, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Govt of India to all the States and UTs in which it stated that anyone needing any essential critical services including dialysis, blood transfusion, chemotherapy, and institutional deliveries, not denied such services” stated the petition.

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