40pc corona beds still vacant: Health Minister
Mentioning that some 14,000 beds have been designated for Covid patients in the country's hospitals, Health and Family Welfare Minister Zahid Maleque on Tuesday said 40 percent of those are still vacant.
"It's not like that patients are not getting treatment in any hospital of Bangladesh. As of today, we've 60 percent beds occupied while 40 percent are still vacant. We've some 14,000 beds for corona patients," he said.
The minister was responding to allegations brought by opposition MPs while discussing their cut-motions regarding Tk 22,883.86-crore demand in grant for the Health Services Division.
The Health Minister said high-flow oxygen lines are essential for Covid-19 patients. So, the government has taken an initiative for arranging 1,000 high-flow oxygen systems and 10,000 new oxygen cylinders.
About the allegations of irregularities in hotels and food costs of doctors and health workers of Dhaka Medical College Hospital, the minister said the allegations were not correct as some 3,700 people stayed there in 50 hotels for a month, and Tk 500 was given as food cost for three meals a day - breakfast, lunch and dinner. "The rent for each room was Tk 1,100 per day."
Noting that the costs were not so high, he said, "The food cost that was said to be (in allegation) is not correct."
Zahid Maleque said now there is no allegation about the standard of the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The government has already sent 30 lakh PPEs to different hospitals, he said.
He said now every private hospital is providing medical treatment though their service charges are high to some extent. "The government will fix the service charges." -UNB