• Friday, Jul 10, 2020
  • Last Update : 03:50 pm

High Court: Denying treatment is a criminal offence

  • Published at 06:46 pm June 15th, 2020
Hospital, patients waiting for doctors
FIle photo of a hospital lobby Mahmud Hossain Opu

Court orders authorities to initiate legal action against those negligent in hospitals

Hospitals cannot deny treatment to any potential patient, infected with Covid-19 or not, said the High Court before concluding that denial of treatment would be a criminal offence.

The observation by the bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim came on Monday after virtual hearings of five petitions on the matter.

The court also directed authorities to initiate legal action against individuals responsible in hospitals, if people denied treatment should die.


Also Read- Deaths from denial of medical treatment on the rise


The court ordered the government to ensure that the directives of the health ministry to ensure treatment at all public and private hospitals are being followed. 

The Health Services Division secretary and chief of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) were told to file an update with the court on the matter by June 30.

The two senior health officials have also been ordered to submit a report by 15 days on the situation in private hospitals.


Also Read- Covid-19: Hospitals continue to deny treatment


The court also ordered the DGHS to form a cell to monitor private hospitals and to inform people, through the daily Covid-19 briefing, on the situation of ICUs in hospitals. 

The monitoring cell will be responsible to ensure that patients are not  charged exorbitantly by private hospitals for ICU facilities, it said.

The court also ordered concerned authorities to set the price of oxygen cylinders and told the commerce ministry’s consumer rights department to monitor it.

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