So what if the Karnataka government thinks it has the private hospitals under its grip, the latter claim that they have not received payment from the government for the treatment of Covid patients who are admitted under government quota.
On July 18, the Karnataka government ordered private hospitals in the state capital to reserve 50 per cent beds for the treatment of coronavirus patients.
"We have 10 beds reserved for the patients referred by the BBMP but despite raising the issue at multiple forums about the non payment of dues, not a single rupee has come. We have treated some 80 patients referred by the state government," Dr Jagadish Hiremath CEO Ace Suhas Hospital said.
He further lamented that the private hospitals have treated more than 10,000 Covid patients referred by the government but not more than 500 files have been cleared. "I don't understand why the government officials have to do this especially during the Covid times when the cost has gone up by 7-8 per cent. How are the hospitals supposed to manage without the cash flow?" Hiremath asks.
The doctor says that last month, he had to raise a loan to clear the salaries and payments to vendors.
"We are made to pay for the services which the government is supposed to pay. We have agreed to take the corona patients at the cost which the government has fixed, but on the contrary the government is not wulling to pay us that amount too," Hiremath remarked.
On Friday, 7,571 cases were recorded across Karnataka out of which Bengaluru is said to have the highest number of cases at 2,948.
However, 6,531 recoveries on August 21 is the only silver lining.