Kolkata: Learning from the COVID and the current ARI surge, where patients had complaints of having had to hop from one hospital to another for a bed, the West Bengal Clinical Establishment Regulatory Commission (WBCERC) has decided to develop a portal that will provide real-time bed vacancy data at private hospitals.
This will be applicable for any patient needing medical attention on emergency basis. The health commission earlier had announced its proposal for a 24X7 helpline where patients can dial the toll-free number for any issues with private hospitals. Now this helpline will extend services to guide patients with information of bed availability.
“The infrastructure for the 24X7 helpline is almost ready and we have requested a toll free number from BSNL. Like what was done during the Covid-19 pandemic, the proposed web portal will have private hospital bed vacancy input on real-time basis. Anyone calling our helpline will be guided accordingly so that they don’t have to run from one hospital to another,” said WBCERC chairman Justice (retd) Ashim Kumar Banerjee.
The decision was taken during a meeting called by the health commission that had representatives from private hospitals and senior officials from the state health department.
“This is a great initiative by the WBCERC. This will be of great help to patients in distress,” said Rupak Barua, group CEO at AMRI Hospitals.
During the meeting on Tuesday, the health commission also sought a complete report from all private hospitals on number of ARI cases, including confirmed adenoviral infection, mortality data and admission rate. Hospitals were told to submit their preparedness plan not only in the current scenario but also for any kind of disease surge in future.
“The hospitals have been given seven days to submit the report,” added Banerjee. On Tuesday, the health department also roped in experienced paediatricians and other health experts from IMA and IPA (Indian Paediatrics Academy) to sensitise paediatricians and general physicians on ARI.
On Tuesday, the city reported two more ARI deaths at Dr BC Roy Post Graduate Institute of Paediatric Sciences. Both the infants were from North 24 Parganas.