An 80-year-old man, who had to approach the Delhi High Court this week after allegedly being refused admission at several hospitals for COVID-19 treatment, died before his case could be heard.
According to his petition, the patient had fallen sick on May 25 and was taken to a private hospital in East Delhi. He caught the coronavirus infection over there because of the staff's negligence, his family has alleged.
After putting him on a ventilator, the hospital allegedly forced the petitioner's son to shift him out to another institution, charging an exorbitant fee and saying that it was not equipped to treat coronavirus patients.
However, the man could not get a bed on time despite approaching several hospitals in the city, both private and government-run.
Delhi's premier All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Max Hospital, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, Rajiv Gandhi Hospital turned him away, saying they have no vacancy, Anil told NDTV.
The family finally decided to request an intervention from the Delhi High Court and filed a petition on Wednesday, asking for a bed with ventilator support at a government hospital and free treatment assured to families with BPL (Below Poverty Line) cards.
However, the man died on the same day before the case could be heard.
His son, who runs a bicycle repairing shop, said he now has a debt of Rs 2 lakh for money that he borrowed from relatives for the treatment.
"Everywhere we went, doctors, leaders of the Aam Aadmi Party and BJP lied to us. They must be punished," he said.
The incident comes amid reports of a number of coronavirus patients in the capital being denied treatment on time as COVID-19 cases in the city crossed the 25,000 mark.
Responding to the reports, the Delhi government on Thursday issued new rules for treating coronavirus patients, fixing accountability and setting time limits for medical procedures.