375 free beds of 52 hospitals within KMC ready to serve the poor

Published On: February 25, 2024 10:50 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Feb 24: As part of a concerted effort to provide essential healthcare services, 52 hospitals within the Kathmandu Metropolitan City have pledged to offer free treatment to the target group.

Collectively, these hospitals boast a capacity of 3,744 beds. Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) has designated 10 percent of this capacity, i.e. 375 beds, specifically for free treatment. Each hospital has been given a unique username and password to facilitate the updating of details within the online system.

Bed allocation and patient lists visible in online system

According to Dhanendra Shrestha, public health inspector of the KMC, the system shows the details into hospital services, bed availability, occupancy rates, and vacant beds of the institutions.

Shrestha said that such a system has already been tested in regional hospitals and Kathmandu Model Hospital.

"This system records admission of patients, diagnoses, treatment duration, and discharge information,” he said.

User name and password are required to operate the system. The Health Department of the metropolis provided orientation to the representatives of all private hospitals within its jurisdiction from February 8 to February 12 and gave usernames and passwords to the hospitals.

Kathmandu Medical College Sinamangal and Manmohan Memorial Medical College Swayambhu boast the highest number of bed capacity among the hospitals within the KMC, each offering 300 beds. 

"The KMC is working to ensure the health-related rights guaranteed by the Constitution of Nepal that citizens get free basic health services from the state, no one is deprived of emergency health services, and every citizen has equal access to health services," says the head of the health department, Sajina Maharjan.

For the free treatment of the target group (poor, helpless and backward), the metropolis has issued the ‘Procedures for Free Treatment, 2080 BS’.

An online system has been implemented to make it systematic and transparent. The Health Department has written to all the hospitals within its geographical area to provide the service from February 13 as prescribed by the procedure.

Procedure for free treatment

Public Health Inspector Dhanendra Shrestha is coordinating this system. According to Shrestha, the target group can get services through any of the three methods.

If you have a poverty ID card, you can go directly to the hospital.

Individuals possessing a poverty ID card can directly seek treatment at the hospital.

Those without an ID card can obtain services from their residing ward office by presenting necessary documents, recommendations, and detailed reports in the prescribed format.

Individuals unable to fulfill the above criteria can approach the Metropolitan City’s free health service facilitation unit with evidence for verification and subsequent recommendation.

Helpless individuals are eligible for free treatment based on recommendations from the nearest ward office and police station, as per the metropolis’ guidelines.

Free treatment campaign from mid-May

Under the legal framework provided by Section 11 (4) Sub-section B (2) of the Local Government Operation Act 2074 BS, Kathmandu Metropolitan City is mandated to regulate health institutions. Chapter 24, Section 70 (d) of the Health Institution Operation Standard 2077 stipulates the allocation of 10 percent of total beds for free treatment of impoverished, helpless, and orphaned patients.

Kathmandu Metropolitan City issued a public notice from May 20, 2023. On June 2, the Ministry of Health and Population (MoHP) decided to make the recommendation of the poor, helpless and destitute patients according to the law and standards through the ministerial decision from the concerned local level ward office.

On June 4, the MoHP issued a circular to the local level asking them to arrange for free treatment of such patients and to monitor it.


After that decision, the Health Department of the KMC started monitoring the hospitals. Now, Kathmandu has started implementation of a 10 percent free treatment system.

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