No private hospital can deny free treatment to burn, acid attack, accident victims: Kejriwal

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New Delhi | Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday told the private hospitals that no accident and burns injuries victim within the geographical boundary of Delhi should be denied free treatment, failing which the government will take strict action against those hospitals.

The Chief Minister, in a meeting with the representatives of private hospitals told them that the Delhi government had implemented the scheme to provide free treatment to victims of accidents, burns and acid attacks in private hospitals on February 1 last year.

“In the medical field, it is stated that the first hour is extremely critical for an accident and burns injury victims, and if medical help is provided to such victims within the golden hour, their lives can be saved, keeping this in mind the Delhi government had brought out this scheme,” Mr Kejriwal said.

The Chief Minister stated that the Supreme Court and Delhi High Court in many directions have made it mandatory that accidents victims and burn injuries victims be provided free treatment at the first available hospital and no hospital can deny treatment to such victims under any circumstances.

However, some complaints have been received recently, in which it has been brought to light that some private hospitals have refused treatment. “Some of the hospitals refuse to treat accidents victims thinking who will pay their bills and whether they have insurance or not,” the Chief Minister said.

“After taking all these factors into consideration, the Delhi government had on February 1, 2018 launched the Cashless Treatment of medico-legal victims of road accidents, acid attacks and thermal burn injuries, to save the lives of such victims irrespective of their economic status, so that their lives could be saved by taking them to the nearest hospital, whether private or government. Under this scheme, the Delhi government bears the entire treatment expenditure of these victims,” the Chief Minister said.

This scheme was implemented on February 1, 2018 and till April this year, lives of 2501 victims have been saved by having taken them to hospitals on time and Delhi government has paid their medical bills, the Chief Minister said.

“I have received some complaints recently that some private hospitals had turned victims away and I had a meeting with the representatives of private hospitals today. I told them that the Delhi government considers them a partner in this scheme. Government hospitals save lives of victims and it is also your duty. It is your legal responsibility also and you cannot make any excuse,” Mr Kejriwal said.

“Delhi government is bearing the entire treatment expenditure of accident and burns injuries victims under its scheme and there should be no complaint in this regard. I am happy that the attitude of all the hospitals was positive and they assured us that there will be no refusal,” Mr Kejriwal said.

The CM said he told the private hospitals, “If any complaint is refused that any hospital refused to treat an accident or a burns injuries victim, our government will not hesitate to take strictest possible action. If it will be found that any hospital adopted an irresponsible attitude, the government will not even hesitate to cancel the licence of such a hospital.”

The Chief Minister said, “I would like to assure the residents of Delhi that god forbidding if any of your near/dear one were to meet with an accident. Your government will stand with you and all hospitals in Delhi will be available for free treatment.”

Sharing another interesting experience and statistic, Mr Kejriwal said that along with the accident victims free treatment scheme, the Delhi government had also launched the Good Samaritan scheme, under which any citizen who took any victim to the hospital was to be provided Rs 2,000 as a goodwill gesture.

“Of the 2501 victims who were treated in private hospitals, you will be surprised to know that only 100 individuals came forward to claim the Good Samaritan amount. People say it is sufficient that they have saved lives and they don’t need money. This is a great example and we are thankful to such noble souls,” the Chief Minister added.