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"Provide Medical Facility To All Persons Suffering From Covid 19 In Delhi": Delhi High Court Directs Govt.

Shreya Agarwal
6 May 2021 1:56 PM GMT
Provide Medical Facility To All Persons Suffering From Covid 19 In Delhi: Delhi High Court Directs Govt.
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The Delhi High Court on Thursday directed the Delhi Government to provide medical facilities to all the persons suffering from covid 19 in the national capital. The Court also stated that patients requiring facilities with regards to hospitalization, medication or ICU with or without ventilator must be provided with the same.A division bench comprising of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice...

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The Delhi High Court on Thursday directed the Delhi Government to provide medical facilities to all the persons suffering from covid 19 in the national capital. The Court also stated that patients requiring facilities with regards to hospitalization, medication or ICU with or without ventilator must be provided with the same.

A division bench comprising of Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Rekha Palli was dealing with a 52 year old petitioner who was on death bed due to falling spo2 level and had prayed for ICU bed with ventilator.

Observing that "the existing medical infrastructure in the state is completely exposed and has been put to test", the Court ordered thus:

"We therefore direct that the govt shall provide the required medical facility for all persons suffering from the disease in Delhi. In case they require medication, hospitalization or ICU with or without ventilator, the same shall be provided."

Noting that the Court "simply becomes a channel" while dealing with such petitions, ordered thus:

"It is the obligation of the State to provide sufficient infrastructure and protect lives cannot be understated. At the same time, one can't lost sight of the fact that we are faced with a once-in-a-century pandemic where even most economically advanced nations have found their infrastructure to be lacking. Existing medical infrastructure in the state is completely exposed and has been put to test."

Furthermore, the Court also observed that merely because petition has been filed doesn't mean it gives the petitioner any preferential place and directed the government to provide the required medical facility for all persons suffering from the disease in Delhi.

On Facilities for Covid Patients and Dissemination of Information

During the course of hearing, Amicus curiae Rao suggested that there was a need of more people instead of just two officers to answer people's basic queries.

"If a patient at home wants to get oxygen, or simply talk to someone to inform his condition. Facility needs to be there." Rao submitted.

Assuring that the suggestions flowing from the Bench, amicus curiae and other counsel will be implemented, Mehra stated that it will consider implementation of three aspects: portal, 1031 number and Mohalla Sabha.

At this stage, Mehra also informed the Court that a more comprehensive report will be filed by the GNCTD in a day or two concerning all the aspects.

On Availability of Remdesivir and Portal for Stock

During the course of hearing today, amicus curiae Rajshekhar Rao apprised the Court that some buffer stock for Covid Medicines has to be created in order to deal with pandemic crisis in the national capital.

This submission was backed up by Advocate Malvika Trivedi who inquired about the stock of Remdesivir.

At the outset, Professor Sanjay Dhir from IIT Delhi apprised the Court about the creation of portal for stock of medication. It was informed by Dhir that maintaining of the said data can very well be done automatically and that there is no need to do it on a manual basis.

On the suggestion of amicus curiae Rao for an account reserve for Remdesivir, the Bench said that the aforesaid reserve will be available with every hospital which can be updated by them every 48 hours.

It was at this point that Advocate Malvika Trivedi highlighted that maximum pilferage was happening from hospital pharmacies, which is why despite large scale availability of the medicine, there was a shortfall.

Advocate Rakesh Malhotra however clarified that there have been instances of pilferage in hospitals, an officer of the Drug Controller is working with every vendor, these are merely allegations not specific instances.

On Formation of Committee for Advising Court and Formulating Policy

Senior Advocate Nitya Ramakrishnan floated a suggestion before the Court that a committee may be constituted for the purpose of Advising the court and also to formulate the policy on the issues of oxygen and drugs.

"Both the governments should have a dedicated body of officers stationed at hospitals continuously so the hospitals aren't over burdened." Ramakrishnan suggested.

She also suggested that Delhi Government may give a list of Jan Basti Vikas Kendras and Jan Suvidha Kendras and that Schools, banquet halls, etc may be converted into secondary health centres. 

"There are innumerable nursing bureaus which may be happy to help. People I represent are in touch with some people who would be happy to help, but don't have the channel. This would augment facilities. A public-private partnership would be helpful." Ramakrishnan said.

On the submissions that people across globes were coming together, the Bench orally remarked:

"That's the problem, people aren't coming together which is why there's hoarding, black marketing, etc. The moral fabric of the society is dismembered."

Edited by Nupur Thapliyal

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