PETALING JAYA: Non-Covid-19 patients at government hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area will be transferred to private facilities to make space for more Covid-19 patients, says the Association of Private Hospitals Malaysia (APHM).
Its president Datuk Dr Kuljit Singh said non-Covid-19 patients were being transferred to the private hospitals in stages from Tuesday (July 20).
"This decision has been made by private hospitals in the greater Klang Valley area consisting of hospitals in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and some in Negri Sembilan. These hospitals will accept non-Covid-19 inpatients from government hospitals as well as patients in the emergency department.
"The idea is to assist the government so that they will have more space in some hospitals where they are planning to convert them into full Covid-19 hospitals," he said on Wednesday (July 21).
Dr Kuljit noted that about 35 to 40 private hospitals were participating in this exercise, adding that more than 800 beds across various private hospitals will be provided for non-Covid-19 patients.
"This is a good move because the government has the infrastructure, the facilities and the experience to treat Category 4 and 5 Covid-19 patients in a big way," he said.
Dr Kuljit said the private hospitals do not have the capacity and the capability to treat Covid-19 patients as this requires manpower and isolation spaces.
On costs, Dr Kuljit said the patients who are transferred to private hospitals do not have to pay for it.
"The government will pay for the treatment when the private hospital accepts the patient. They (the government) will look at our itemised billing and based on a cap, will pay accordingly.
"Private hospitals will try their best to treat the patients within the cap," he said, adding that any excess would be negotiated with the government.
Private hospitals, Dr Kuljit said, only want to assist the government and do not view this as a "business venture" nor have any intention of "making profits".
"We are very happy to be given the opportunity to help the government at this stage when Covid-19 cases are very high," he said.