Amidst an "upsurge" in the number of dengue cases in NCR region, the Centre today asked the Delhi government to take action against private hospitals who were overcharging patients apart from directing it to increase the number of bed in state hospitals. Union Health Minister J P Nadda who chaired a high-level meeting to review the preparedness for dengue and measures taken to address it said that the bed strength for dengue patients in central government hospitals in Delhi is also being increased. Even as two more patients succumbed to the disease and over 600 fresh cases were reported in the capital in the last one week taking the total to 1,872 this year, the Union Health Ministry said that it is "constantly and closely" reviewing the situation with the state government, municipal bodies, NDMC, Delhi Cantonment Board, CPWD and all the other agencies. "The Health Ministry has decided to ask the Delhi government to take action against any overcharging by the private hospitals while providing treatment to dengue patients. "Delhi Government has also been asked to increase the bed strength and expedite this for dengue patients in the state hospitals.
The bed strength for dengue patients in the central government's hospitals is also being increased," an official statement said. In a tweet after the meeting, Nadda also said that the "Health Ministry directed Delhi government to check overcharging of dengue patients by private hospitals. Delhi government has been asked to expedite increase in the bed strength for dengue patients in state hospitals." The Ministry said that adequate stocks of NS1 and IgM testing kits to detect dengue are available with identified 514 sentinel surveillance hospitals and apex referral labs while it has also undertaken "intensive and targeted" multimedia information, education and communication (IEC) activities to create mass awareness.