Courts Update Delhi HC issues notice to Delhi govt on...

Delhi HC issues notice to Delhi govt on capping price of HRCT test for COVID-19

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New Delhi, May 3 (ILNS) The Delhi High Court today issued notice to the Delhi government, while hearing a Public Interest Litigation, seeking direction to the Delhi Government to cap the price of High-Resolution Computerised Tomography (HRCT) Test, which is used for detecting the presence of Novel Coronavirus.

The Division Bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jasmeet Singh passed this order, while hearing a PIL filed by Shivleen Pasricha, through Advocate Amresh Anand.

The petitioner Advocate said that currently, the price of HRCT is unregulated in the state of NCT of Delhi and it costs between Rs 5000 to Rs 6500, which may be beyond the paying capacity of a common man.

The price of HRCT/ CT scan/ test has already been regulated by the state governments of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Punjab and Madhya Pradesh at a very low price, as compared to what the Delhi hospitals are charging.

The petition submitted that on several occasions, it has been seen that a suspected/probable COVID patient, though may have tested negative in RT-PCR test, has indeed contracted COVID-19 infection, which could only be later found after undergoing the HRCT test/scan.

It further submitted that that the cost of the HRCT Test at present in the state of National Capital Territory is unregulated and very high, beyond the affordability of a common man earning an average income.

The petition states, “The need of the hour is to take immediate steps by the respondents to make HRCT an essential test for COVID-19, available to the common man, at reasonable and affordable prices.”

The petition said that in the present COVID-19 wave, there are many cases where RT-PCR test reports are coming negative; however, the patients are being diagnosed with COVID-19 after taking the HRCT test.

Hence, the petition argued that getting HRCT done for immediate and/ or proper diagnosis, management, and treatment of COVID-19 in suspected/ probable patients is tremendously relevant and crucial.

“Hypothetically, if a nuclear family of four is suspected to be infected by COVID-19, and they are to undergo HRCT for determining the specificity and/ or severity and/ or diagnosis of the infection, then they have to shell out a considerable amount of money, which may be outside the scope of affordability of a common man,” the petition said.

The petition sought directions to the respondents to take appropriate steps to regulate/ cap the rate of HRCT test/ scan in the State of National Capital Territory of Delhi, specifically for patients having COVID-19 symptoms, in the interest of justice. ILNS/KR/SJ/RJ

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