Nepal government has fixed the fee for private hospitals to charge for the treatment of COVID-19.

Spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Population, Dr Jageshwor Gautam, informed that private hospitals can charge between minimum Rs 3,500 and Rs 15,000 maximum a day as fee for the treatment of COVID-19 – depending on the severity of individual cases.

The number of people infected with coronavirus has continued to increase after the lockdown was lifted, putting more pressure on already exhausted government hospitals. Hence, the government came up with the fee structure in order to end the situation wherein infected people have been forced to roam around due to lack of treatment for COVID-19 patients, said Minister Gautam.

A meeting of the Council of Ministers had approved to provide grant to private hospitals for the treatment of COVID-19 with an amendment to the Infectious Disease Act, 2020 on June 29.

The order provisions making arrangement for treatment of COVID-19 patients in private, non-governmental, cooperative and community hospitals in case government hospitals fall short of services.

However, the Health Ministry has made it clear that the government will not bear the cost of treatment for those who get admitted at private hospitals for COVID-19 treatment.

Dr Gautam said that fixing the cost ceiling was aimed at bringing uniformity in fees at private hospitals. “We have 10,000 beds in government hospitals across the country and treatment is free of cost in these hospitals,” he said.