The Karnataka government has allowed private hospitals to use hotels or similar accommodations to set up COVID-19 treatment facilities for patients with moderate symptoms.
These facilities – named 'Step-Down Units' – will provide a level of intermediary care between general wards and ICU, reported The News Minute.
The private hospitals can collaborate with hotels to set up these facilities.
“The responsibility of these centres will be to take care of the patients who need to be closely monitored, administered prescribed medications, conducting necessary investigations and require supportive oxygen supplementation,” a notification by the Karnataka government stated.
A private establishment will need to follow certain guidelines to be denoted as a 'Step-Down Unit'.
Firstly, the medical establishment must be registered under the KPME (Karnataka Private Medical Establishments) Act and will have to inform about the arrangement of beds to concerned authorities, TNM reported.
The notification also stipulated that the liability of running the centre would be on the hospital registered under the KPME Act. It mandated the establishment to ensure that only COVID-19 patients, ordered treatment by the hospital, are admitted to a Step-Down Unit with due information to authorities concerned. The Step-Down Unit must be within 500 metres of an existing hospital caring for COVID-19 patients in case the person needs to be transferred to it.
The government has also capped the prices for these units. The cap for economy or budget hotels is Rs 8,000 per night. It's 10,000 rupees for three-star hotels and 12,000 rupees for five-star hotels.
(With inputs from TNM)