Kerala spends Rs 904 cr for Covid treatment; major part used to disburse salary of staff

Rajesh Ravindran

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Alappuzha: The Central - State governments have spent Rs 904.96 crores in Kerala for providing Covid treatment in the state. Almost half of the funds were utilised to disburse salary for health workers who were posted temporarily in view of the pandemic. Rs 449.7 crores were paid as salary till date.

The report released by the Nation Health Mission points out that the government had spent Rs 186.80 crores for medicines, PPE kits and masks while Rs 78.06 crores was spent on diagnosis and transportation of samples to laboratories.

Rs 735.11 crores and Rs 107.43 crores were granted by the Centre and State respectively for Emergency Covid Response Plan. NHM provided another Rs 176.03 crores for Kerala during emergency and by this, the total funds spent in Kerala for Covid treatment touches Rs 1018.57 crores.

The estimates exclude the revenue spent for other expenses in the health sector. With the reduction in the transmission rate of the third wave of Covid 19, the government expects to cut down the outlay for Covid treatment. The state has also deducted Rs 67.96 crores from the Disaster Management Fund which was spent for temporary treatment centres, quarantine facilities, control room, call centre, awareness campaigns, observation, sample collection and food for Covid patients.

Most of the funds were utilised in the financial year 2020-21 in which the pandemic was severe. Rs 573.96 crores were spent altogether. Rs 123.68 crores were expended in 2019- 20 while Rs 144.9 spent in 2021-22. From regional to international, the voluntary organisations have contributed extensively for Covid treatment in the state. Without it, the expenses would have surged even more.

Major expenses Rs (in crores)
Salary for temporary staff 449.7
Medicines, PPE kits 186.80
Equipment for treatment 99.70
Diagnosis, sample exchange 78.06
Awareness 16.99

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