COVID-19: Andhra Pradesh Government Takes Over Private Hospitals 

All the doctors, nurses and non-medical staff of these hospitals can be deputed for attending COVID-19 cases.

1 min read
File image of a nurse in a hospital during the COVID-19 pandemic in India. Image used for representation purposes. 

The Andhra Pradesh government has asked all private medical colleges and hospitals in the state to make their hospital facilities, staff and campuses available to respective district collectors. This is a part of the government’s decision to expand their capacity to deal with increasing coronavirus cases.

The state has recorded 40 cases so far, out of which 17 were reported on Tuesday, 31 March. Out of these 17, 11 cases are suspected to have contracted the virus while attending a religious congregation, hosted by the Tablighi Jamaat, in the Nizamuddin area of New Delhi.

The government is taking over private hospital under the Andhra Pradesh Epidemic Disease (COVID) Regulations, 2020. This new legislation was created using sections of the British Era Epidemic Disease Act, 1897 and National Disaster Management Act 2005.

As per the new regulation, the government will be able to use the facilities such as isolation beds, ventilators, testing labs, pharmacies, mortuaries, medical equipment and others at any private hospitals to accommodate cases of COVID-19.

Apart from that, all the doctors, nurses, medical and non-medical staff of these hospitals can be deputed for attending COVID-19 cases.

Any hospital refusing to release their facilities or human resources will be liable for punishment under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code.

A senior Andhra Pradesh official said that Chief Minister’s office has asked the adminstation to read at least 5,000 isolation beds in each district. The state currently has 16,723 isolation beds and with the adding 5,000 beds in each district a total of 65,000 beds be available in the state, said the official.

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