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Delhi HC Directs Centre & Delhi Govt To Ensure Adequate Testing And Real Time Updating Of Data Related To COVID19

9 Jun 2020 3:34 PM GMT
Delhi HC Directs Centre & Delhi Govt To Ensure Adequate Testing And Real Time Updating Of Data Related To COVID19
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Delhi High Court has directed both the Centre and the Delhi Government to ensure that testing is carried out by the Central Government as well as the State Government run hospitals, as far as possible, subject to availability of testing kits with priority be given to the persons approaching for test on the recommendation of a doctor.

While hearing a suo moto matter on the steps taken up by both the governments in ensuring preparedness to deal with rising cases of COVID19, the Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan further directed both the governments to ensure that real time data is updated on the portals dedicated to COVID19.

Submissions Made By Amicus Curiae

  1. Mobile Application namely "Delhi Corona Mobile Application", developed by Delhi Government is not being updated regularly.
  2. There is a mismatch of the facts and data released by the Government/private hospitals in Delhi especially with regard to the availability of the beds and ventilators.
  3. Some of the hospitals run by Central Government/Government of NCT of Delhi are not updating the data.
  4. Helpline numbers as provided by Govt. of NCT of Delhi, are not properly working.
  5. Nodal Officers appointed by the Delhi Government should be the ones vested with the responsibility to monitor the allotment of the beds in the Government as well as private hospitals, so that these officers can keep a check on the hospitals which are denying admission to the corona patients even though the beds are available with them
  6. Real time updation of data should be done by the hospitals or data should at least be updated every 8 hours.
  7. There should be no denial in testing and asymptomatic patients should also be tested for Covid 19 immediately.

Submissions Made By Senior Advocate Chander M Lall for the Intervenor

  1. Suitable direction may be given to the Central Government and the Government of NCT of Delhi to carry out tests of all those having apprehension of being exposed to Coronavirus.
  2. Coronavirus may affect several organs of the body and therefore the hospitals having multi-speciality facilities should be made available for the Corona patients.

Submissions Made by Mr Rahul Mehra on behalf of the Delhi Government

  1. Standard Operating Procedure has also been evolved for receiving calls and effectively responding to the callers. As per the SOP, whenever a call is received, the concerned District Surveillance Officer (DSO) is informed and in case of a COVID 19 case, and the concerned DSO takes the necessary measures.
  2. That a special helpline number dedicated only to the Corona positive patients/cases has recently been initiated. Each District has a DSO supported by a medical team to reach out to the patients by making calls or home-visits to assess whether they need home-quarantine or are required to be sent to the hospitals or a nearby quarantine-centre
  3. Much of the district-wise distribution data that Delhi receives from ICMR is incorrect, resulting in inordinate delay in the geo-station mapping carried out by authorities/agencies. Thus, there is usually a delay caused in contacting the patient who has tested positive after he has received the lab-report and in the meantime patients tend to panic.
  4. Four Grievance Officers have been appointed for redressal of complaints regarding availability of the ambulance, hospital, beds and ventilators, etc.
  5. Delhi Government is not updating the data on this mobile application but the ID and passwords have been given to the concerned hospitals and these hospitals are directly uploading the data regarding availability of the beds, ventilators, etc

After taking these submissions into consideration, the court noted that there is a need of real time updation of the data by all hospitals including the Delhi Government run hospitals, the Central Government run hospitals and private hospitals.

Therefore, the court directed both the Delhi Government and the Central Government to take all necessary steps for ensuring real time updation of the data, without too much of a time lag, so that the information being received by the public is current.

The court further directed that if any Committee is appointed by Government of NCT of Delhi, the said Committee will also take note of this fact that there shall bereal time updation of the data on the mobile application developed by the Government of NCT of Delhi.

While asking both the governments to file replies, the court directed them to take the suggestions made my the Senior Counsel for the Intervenor which have talked about the availability of hospitals having multi speciality facilities for the Corona patients.

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